Government supplementary budget passes through Lower House; JCP opposing

Calling for extra money to be used to safeguard the people's living
conditions, the Japanese Communist Party voted against the government bill
on a 2001 draft supplementary budget. The bill was passed through the House
of Representatives on November 13.

The 2.995 trillion yen supplementary budget was approved with the
majority approval of the ruling Liberal Democratic, Komei, and New
Conservative parties, while the JCP and other opposition parties voted

In compiling the supplementary budget, the Koizumi Cabinet has claimed
that state budgets must be used to implement the "restructurizing" plan,
stressing that certain amounts are allotted to ease "pains" which people are
expected to suffer from the implementation of the plan.

But, Koizumi's measures to meet issues of unemployment and difficulties of
small- and medium-sized companies actually means supporting major
corporations' massively cutting personnel, and abandoning many smaller
companies in a guise of an "urgent policy to dispose of bad loans."

Money to be used for increasing unemployment and company failures is in
the package of Koizumi's supplementary budget in the name of measures for
job creation and small- and medium-sized businesses, said Akahata on
November 14.

Speaking against the revised budget bill in the Lower House plenary
JCP Sasaki Kensho said that the government's employment policy pays no heed
to legislate a law to ban massive personnel cuts by major corporations,
which is the major source of uneasiness of the employment situation.

The JCP is opposed to allotting 42 billion yen, the largest ever Defense
Agency-related supplementary budget, by which the Self-Defense Forces will
guard U.S. military bases in Japan. Also, the construction of a new
state-of-the-art air base will proceed in Okinawa as part of costs for the
Special Action Committee on Okinawa (SACO), Sasaki insisted.

Representatives of other opposition parties said, "Never slow down
structural reform" (Democratic Party of Japan), and "the budget bill falls
short of a comprehensive reform" (Liberal Party), with both encouraging the
Koizumi cabinet's "structural reform." (end)