Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s cabinet approved a $182 billion package on Thursday to pull the economy out of deflation, but doubts remain about the impact.
The package has a headline value of 18.6 trillion yen ($182 billion), which is an exaggerated figure as the bulk of the package includes loans from government-backed lenders and spending by local governments that was already scheduled.
The core of the package is 5.5 trillion yen in spending measures which Abe ordered in October to bolster the economy ahead of a national sales-tax hike in April. The government does not have to sell new debt to fund this spending.
The package has raised concerns that Japan’s government has not broken away from the stop-gap measures and piecemeal policymaking that some say has hampered long-term growth.
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