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HOME  > Past issues  > 2007 December 12 - 18  > JCP exposes collusive relationships between Defense Ministry and problematic contractors
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2007 December 12 - 18 [POLITICS]

JCP exposes collusive relationships between Defense Ministry and problematic contractors

December 14, 2007
At the December 13 House of Councilors Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee meeting, Japanese Communist Party representative Inoue Satoshi exposed the fact that firms removed from the Defense Ministry’s list of contractors for padding bills continued to receive ministry orders for defense equipment.

Inoue said that the government has accused none of these contractors of padding the cost of military equipments since 1990. Since 2000 alone, all the firms that were suspended from doing business with the Defense Ministry have continued to receive orders from the ministry for 161 contracts totaling 7.4 billion yen. He said that the ministry’s measure against these firms has not been effective at all.

Defense Minister Ishiba Shigeru conceded that “suspension of these firms from doing business with the ministry has not been effective.”

Asked by Inoue, “Do you think that people can understand such a relationship in which the ministry can’t have any effect on contractors’ violations?” Fukuda said, “It is incomprehensible to me. I don’t think it is comprehensible to the general public either.”

Inoue pointed out that contractors are able to continue their business because they continue to provide jobs to retired bureaucrats from the ministry even after the discovery of bill-padding cases involving these firms, including NEC Corporation which has accepted 23 retirees of the Defense Ministry. Inoue pointed out that such “parachuting” practices should be banned because they are the root-cause of the corrupt relationship.

Fukuda said, “Such (parachuting) practices should be rigorously restricted.”
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