FOCUS: Social Security Reforms Tough Mission for Abe's New Cabinet
Tokyo, Sept. 11 (Jiji Press)--Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who reshuffled his cabinet on Wednesday, is set to boost efforts to reform the nation's social security systems, a top priority domestic issue for him, with two years to go before the end of his final three-year term as president of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party in September 2021.
As the focal point will be to increase financial burdens on people, however, discussions on the matter are bound to be tough, with a backlash expected from opposition parties.
Abe also aims to give a final touch to "Abenomics," a reflationary policy he has been promoting since returning to power in late 2012. But escalating trade tensions between the United States and China are casting dark clouds on the completion of the economic policy.
"The biggest challenge (for the new cabinet) is tackling the country's aging population and low birthrate," Abe said at a press conference after the launch of the reshuffled cabinet. "I'll push ahead with reforms to create a social security system reassuring everyone," he added.
Abe unveiled a plan to establish a new panel discussing sweeping reform measures, including parenting support, aiming to create a social security system embracing all generations.