Prime Minister Shinzo Abe instructed his ministers to draw up a stimulus package to offset a possible negative impact on the Japanese economy from the planned sales tax hike in April, Finance Minister Taro Aso said Tuesday.
Earlier in the day, Abe met with some Cabinet members such as Aso and economic and fiscal policy minister Akira Amari to discuss the matter.
The premier is expected to announce in early October whether the government will raise the consumption tax as planned, amid concerns that it could undermine the country’s nascent economic recovery and derail the efforts to beat nearly two decades of deflation.
“The prime minister called on us to map out by the end of this month a package to ensure economic growth ahead,” Aso told a press conference after meeting with Abe.
“If the government raises the sales tax rate, we have to prevent consumer spending and the economy from languishing. (Abe) asked us to come up with several ideas,” Aso added.
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