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HOME  > Past issues  > 2019 June 5 - 11  > Koike grills PM Abe about gov’t report admitting to insufficient pension benefits
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2019 June 5 - 11 [POLITICS]

Koike grills PM Abe about gov’t report admitting to insufficient pension benefits

June 11, 2019

Japanese Communist Party Secretariat Head Koike Akira on June 10 at a House of Councilors Audit Committee meeting grilled the Abe government about the latest Financial Service Agency report indicating that elderly couples depending on public pension benefits will face a deficit of 20 million yen during their retirement.

The FSA report provided a calculation showing that an elderly couple (the husband aged 65 or older and the wife aged 60 or over) depending only on their pensions will face a monthly debt of 55,000 yen, warning the general public of the need to build up 20 million yen in life savings to supplement their pensions.

Koike pointed out, “The government has proclaimed that public pension programs will provide enough retirement income to live on. However, the FSA report exposed the fraudulence of the government proclamation.”

PM Abe did not deny the accuracy of the FSA conclusion but claimed that the report failed to offer details.

Koike introduced the JCP’s own calculation based on government data. According to the party’s calculation, due to the Abe government’s cutbacks in public pension programs, those who are 41 years old or younger will have to save 36 million yen to cover the shortage from their pensions.

Koike noted that the Abe government in the past boasted that the government provides adequate pension benefits which enable retirees to maintain a high quality of living. “The current government stance to force the people to financially prepare for retirement without relying on pension benefits is tantamount to carrying out a fraud upon the public,” Koike added.

Driven into being unable to coherently respond, PM Abe snapped at Koike, “Tell me then what to do.”

Koike said, “To just stand by and take no action regarding insufficient pension benefits will provoke increased anxiety among the public, cool down domestic demand, and devastate Japan’s economy. The need is for the government to implement measures that will improve the public pension system by taking the FSA report seriously.” He also explained the JCP election policy which proposes that an additional 5,000 yen a month or 60,000 yen a year be provided to all low-income pensioners and that the “macroeconomic slide” mechanism for cutting pension benefits be abolished.

Past related articles:
> JCP publishes Upper House election platform seeking to restore hope in improving people’s livelihoods [May 23, 2019]
> Japan’s public pension fund records largest-ever loss of 15 trillion yen under Abenomics [February 2, 2019]
> Abe intends to force people to keep working as long as possible with insufficient pension benefits: Koike [February 2, 2019]

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