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1. Prime Minister Kishida to “Maintain” 10% Consumption Tax

According to 0TeleNews24, the opposition parties pressed Prime Minister Kishida to reduce the consumption tax on Tuesday. While Japanese Communist Party Chairman Kazuo Shii called for a reduction in the consumption tax rate to 5%, Prime Minister Kishida indicated that he would maintain the current rate of 10% for the time being.

Chairman Shii: “I strongly urge that the consumption tax be reduced to 5%. If the prime minister’s words about ‘shifting away from neoliberalism’ are genuine, then all of these things are obvious, aren’t they?” Prime Minister Kishida: “With regard to the tax system, we have been reviewing the income tax and inheritance tax systems in order to restore the redistributive function by raising the maximum tax rates. The consumption tax is positioned as a source of revenue for social security, so for the time being we do not intend to touch on the consumption tax.”

Prime Minister Kishida has announced that the third dose of the CCP virus vaccine will be “fully paid for at public expense” and that “preparations will be made to start the third vaccination as early as December of this year.

2. G20 Leaders Discuss Situation in Afghanistan; Kishida Announces 22 Billion Yen in Aid for Afghanistan by Year’s End

Asahi News reported Tuesday that G20 held its first summit-level extraordinary meeting on the situation in Afghanistan online on Oct. 12. This was Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s first participation in an international conference since taking office. Each country stressed the importance of humanitarian assistance. However, CCP Chairman Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin did not participate in the meeting, raising concerns about the lack of coordination. According to the Japanese government, Prime Minister Kishida has expressed his intention to provide a total of $200 million (about 22 billion yen) in aid this year, including $65 million (about 7.1 billion yen) in new aid, to respond to the humanitarian crisis. “He said that it is essential for the Taliban to sever ties with the terrorist organization.

3. LDP Proposes to “Rebuild the Middle Class”; The Gap Between the Rich and the Poor Will Become an Election Issue

The Liberal Democratic Party of Japan announced its campaign promises for the House of Representatives election on the 12th, Kyodo News reported. These include the new capitalism advocated by Prime Minister Fumio Kishida (party president), which states that “we will rebuild a strong middle class” and that we will support companies that actively raise wages in the tax system. However, Kishida’s previously cited option of adjusting the taxation of financial income is not recorded. The election pledges to be announced by the Constitutional Democratic Party on the 13th will include the strengthening of taxes on the wealthy and large corporations.

Kishida will dissolve the House of Representatives on the afternoon of the 14th. The political parties, both in the opposition and in the opposition, are likely to engage in a heated debate on specific policies to correct the gap between the rich and the poor. Regarding the rebuilding of the middle class, it is stressed that “while making bold investments toward economic growth, we will increase income through distribution and improve consumer psychology,” and it is also stated that the income of the nurses and caregivers will be raised.

4. Kishida Says Relations with Taiwan Will Remain and Deepen Cooperation

Kyodo News reported that Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said in a House of Representatives question on the 11th on relations with Taiwan that he would maintain the previous government policy of maintaining unofficial and substantive relations and on this basis “seek to further deepen cooperation and exchanges between Japan and Taiwan”. The government also said that it would “pay attention to the situation around Taiwan” in view of the increasing tension in the Taiwan Strait due to CCP’s military pressure.

He stressed that Taiwan is “a very important partner and valuable friend that shares basic values and has close economic ties”. He also said, “Peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait is important. I look forward to a peaceful resolution of the issues surrounding Taiwan through dialogue between the parties.” In a response, Kishida said, “When considering maintaining the deterrent effect of the Japan-U.S. alliance and eliminating the danger of Putianma, relocation to Beyonago is the only solution.”

5.Mitsubishi Electric Halts Refrigerator Production for 10 Days Due to Delay in Parts Supply from Southeast Asia

Mitsubishi Electric Corporation, a major electronics manufacturer, has decided to halt the production of household refrigerators at its plant in Shizuoka City for 10 days due to a delay in the supply of some parts from Southeast Asia, where the spread of the CCP virus continues. The company is hoping to resume production of refrigerators on the 25th of this month and is “committed to recovering production”. Due to the continuing pandemic in Southeast Asia, automakers such as Toyota and Honda have been forced to reduce production, and the impact has spread to electronics manufacturers as well.

6. Due to Declining Demand for Restaurant Food, MAFF to Set Special Quota of 150,000 Tons of Rice

Due to the CCP virus pandemic, there is a surplus of rice due to a decrease in demand for food service, and the Japanese Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF) has decided on a special quota of 150,000 tons of rice that will be effectively cut off from the market in order to prevent the price from falling. This was explained by the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries at a meeting of the LDP subcommittee held on Tuesday.

In this context, MAFF has decided to effectively separate 150,000 tons of the 370,000 tons of last year’s rice stored in the private sector for sale after November of this year from the market as a special quota in order to prevent the price of rice from falling. In addition, the government will subsidize the full price of rice when it is sold to children’s cafeterias and food banks, and half of the price when it is sold to restaurants and for lunch boxes and side dishes.

【Himalaya Japan Galaxy- Alpha Planet】
Translator: 帆間知津
Proofreading: π&π