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Top Finance Bureaucrat Criticizes Pork-Barrel Debate in Japan

Top Finance Bureaucrat Criticizes Pork-Barrel Debate in Japan

   Tokyo, Oct. 8 (Jiji Press)--The top Finance Ministry bureaucrat criticized in an issue of a monthly magazine published Friday that the policy debate for the ruling Liberal Democratic Party's leadership election and the upcoming House of Representatives election is "like a battle of pork barrels."
   The article by Koji Yano, vice minister of finance, in the November edition of Bungei Shunju touched mainly on the need for fiscal reconstruction.
   It is unusual for an incumbent official in the top finance bureaucratic post to voice a personal opinion via such a platform.
   On ruling and opposition party proposals for large-scale economic packages of several tens of trillions of yen and lowering the consumption tax rate, Yano said, "We hear a lot of talk (from political parties) as if the public purse is bottomless."
   Japan's fiscal situation is "like the Titanic hurtling head-on toward an iceberg," he said.

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AFP-JIJI PRESS NEWS JOURNAL


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