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HOME  > Past issues  > 2019 July 10 - 16  > Abe brags about his agricultural policies based on misleading data
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2019 July 10 - 16 [ECONOMY]

Abe brags about his agricultural policies based on misleading data

July 11, 2019
The Abe government has boasted that its agricultural policies contributed to increasing farmers’ incomes as well as increasing agricultural exports. However, in reality, the government just picked and chose statistics that appear to support this claim.

The agricultural production income increased to 3.8 trillion yen in 2017, according to government statistics. This was mainly because of higher prices which stemmed from a drop in outputs of farm products. The rise in the rice price, in particular, was a result of the tight supply-demand situation due to natural disasters in the main production regions.

Japan’s exports of agricultural and marine products in 2018 grew to 906.8 billion yen, up 12.4% from the previous year, hitting a record high for six years in a row. This figure includes exports of chemical substances and processed foods made from imported ingredients.

On the other hand, Japan’s imports of agricultural and fishery products in 2018 stood at 9.7 trillion yen, up 3.2%, over ten times larger than exports. Japan in the same year suffered a deficit of 8.7 trillion yen in food-related trade, which is a 2.3% rise from a year earlier.

In addition, the number of farmers continues to fall and as a result, more and more farmland is left uncultivated or used for non-farming purposes. Given these facts, no one would think that Abe’s agricultural policy has brought Japan’s farming industry back to a healthy condition.

Past related articles:
> Abe’s submissive stance in trade talks with US will lead Japan into economic ruin [April 19, 2019]
> Abe silent on fact that the amount of Japan’s food imports is 10 times larger than food exports [February 28, 2019]
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