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HOME  > Past issues  > 2014 October 22 - 28  > Economy Minister illegally receives donations from foreign-owned corporation
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2014 October 22 - 28 [POLITICS]

Economy Minister illegally receives donations from foreign-owned corporation

October 28, 2014
Only six days after taking office as Economy Minister, Miyazawa Yoichi was hit by the third scandal that he has been involved in, allegedly, illegally receiving political donations from a company owned by foreign citizens.

On October 21, he succeeded Obuchi Yuko who stepped down from the post as Economy Minister due to her misuse of political funds. Miyazawa has been under fire after it was revealed that his political funds organization used money at a seedy bar in his constituency. He has also been criticized for holding 600 shares in Tokyo Electric Power Company which is a conflict of interest inappropriate for the minister who controls the utility.

In addition, Miyazawa on October 27 admitted to the fact that he received a total of 400,000 yen in political donations in 2007 and 2008 from a pachinko parlor operator with a majority of shareholders non-Japanese, though the Political Funds Control Law prohibits Japanese politicians from accepting donations from foreign citizens or foreign corporations. Miyazawa said to reporters that he had told his staff to return the money.

Japanese Communist Party Secretariat Head Yamashita Yoshiki on the same day at a press conference said, “The refund will not put an end to this money scandal. Miyazawa should disclose the details to the public.”

Pointing out that the Economy Minister is creating scandals one after another, Yamashita said that Prime Minister Abe Shinzo should be held responsible for appointing Miyazawa as Obuchi’s successor. Yamashita added that if Miyazawa fails to fulfill his responsibility to explain about the issue, his qualification for the post will be called into question.

Regarding political donations from foreign citizens, in March 2011 the then Foreign Minister Maehara Seiji resigned after a 250,000 yen political donation to him from a Korean resident running a business in Japan was revealed.

Past related article
> 2 female ministers’ resignation delivers blow to Abe Cabinet [October 21, 2014]
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