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Kishida Seeks Understanding for Tax Hikes in Policy Address

Kishida Seeks Understanding for Tax Hikes in Policy Address

   Tokyo, Jan. 23 (Jiji Press)--Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida sought the public's understanding for the plan to raise taxes to cover the envisaged boost to defense spending, in his policy address before the Diet, Japan's parliament, on Monday.
   Among policy issues facing the government, the prime minister discussed the drastic strengthening of the country's defense capacity early in the speech at a plenary session of the House of Representatives, the lower chamber.
   He said the government will secure funds totaling 43 trillion yen for defense spending over the five years from fiscal 2023, working to possess counterstrike capabilities and enhance the country's defense strength on the Nansei southwestern islands.
   For defense spending from fiscal 2027, Kishida said that a stable revenue source worth an additional 4 trillion yen will be needed every year. While noting that the government plans to secure about 3 trillion yen through administrative and fiscal reforms, he said the remaining 1 trillion yen will be acquired "as our responsibility, without us living today and postponing the task to future generations."
   The government plans to cover the 1 trillion yen by raising taxes, but the prime minister held back from using straightforward expressions about the tax hike plan in the speech.

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