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HOME  > Past issues  > 2007 December 19 - 2008 January 8  > JCP will make efforts for drastic revision of FY 2008 budget: Ichida
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2007 December 19 - 2008 January 8 TOP3 [POLITICS]

JCP will make efforts for drastic revision of FY 2008 budget: Ichida

December 21, 2007
The JCP Secretariat head stated, “It is unacceptable that the government’s draft budget is further expanding measures serving large corporations while turning its back on the people suffering from tax hikes and reductions in spending for social welfare programs.”

Concerning the FY 2008 draft budget that the Finance Ministry released on December 20, Japanese Communist Party Secretariat Head Ichida Tadayoshi on the same day issued the following statement:

The FY 2008 draft budget maintains the “structural reform” policy line that has been devastating the general public and local economies, and giving top priority to serving business circles and large corporations. It is unacceptable that the draft budget is further expanding measures serving the interest of large corporations such as new tax breaks for research and development while turning its back on the people suffering from a series of tax hikes and reductions in spending for social welfare programs.

In defiance of the growing public anxiety over increased poverty and social disparities, the government policy is heartlessly cutting budgets related to people’s livelihoods, education, and small- and medium-sized businesses. It continues to cut by 220 billion yen in the natural increase in social welfare spending due to the aging of the population. It reduces livelihood protection benefits and forcibly implements in April the infamous medical-care system for the elderly aged 75 or more with a freeze on only a fraction of the measures. The government has further reduced budgets and subsidies for private schools, national universities, and the agriculture sector.

The government proposal, on the other hand, maintains budget “sanctuaries” such as the preferential treatment to large corporations and the wealthy as well as large-scale development projects. It not only expands tax breaks for research and development but also maintains the preferential securities tax breaks. The government has also decided to maintain for 10 more years the revenue source specifically earmarked for road construction, and the draft budget pours a huge amount of money into large-scale public works projects. No justifiable measures are seen to deal with the urgent issue of global warming.

In addition to maintaining the current level of the “sympathy budget” by yielding to U.S. demands, the draft budget has increased the allocation for realignment of U.S. forces in Japan from last year’s level. Despite the severe public criticism of the defense scandal and padding the costs for military equipment, the government has sanctified the military budget and refused to conduct a review of it.

It is absolutely unacceptable to push ahead with increases in the burdens of the public by consumption tax hikes as recently proposed by the government and ruling bloc tax panels while leaving preferential tax breaks benefiting large corporations and the military budget as they are.

The JCP will make its utmost effort for a drastic revision of the FY 2008 budget in order to protect people’s living conditions and peace.
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