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HOME  > Past issues  > 2021 September 22 - 28  > Shii releases policy proposals for economy under pandemic situation
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2021 September 22 - 28 [POLITICS]

Shii releases policy proposals for economy under pandemic situation

September 23, 2021
Japanese Communist Party Chair Shii Kazuo on September 22 at a press conference at the JCP head office published a proposal on economic policies under the COVID-19 pandemic, aiming for a shift from neoliberal economics.

- Under the JCP proposal, state budgets will be doubled to increase the number of available beds and intensive care units as well as to improve the emergency medical system and public healthcare centers; a 10-fold increase in the budget will be implemented for the National Institute of Infectious Diseases; an expert panel dealing with infections will be created by the government; and a special benefit of 100,000 yen will be granted to COVID-affected individuals and families in need.

- In order to protect non-regular workers' rights, strict rules will be established and the minimum level of wages and payment of leave allowances will be specified in employment contracts.

- Admission fees at universities will be abolished and a child stipend will be paid to parents with children up to 18 years old.

- Support will be given to small- and mid-sized enterprises facing difficulties caused by the pandemic and to the agriculture, forestry, and fisheries industry; local economies will be supported; and the government will buy rice as an urgent measure needed to deal with the sharp drop in the price of rice.

- In order to redress the unfairness in taxation, preferential taxes for the wealthy and large corporations will be eliminated; and the rate of the consumption tax will be reduced to 5%.

- The climate crisis will be overcome; and a Japan resilient to disasters will be created.

Shii explained that to implement the policies needed to properly tackle the COVID-19 crisis, about 20 trillion yen will be necessary. He said, "The source will be covered by government bonds. This is just a temporary expenditure that is necessary to protect people's lives and livelihoods during the pandemic."

Regarding the implementation of the permanent policies, Shii said, "This will require 19 trillion yen." He explained that the resource will be secured by raising corporate taxes back up to 28%, imposing a fair share of taxes on the wealthy, and cutting the wasteful use of taxes for military buildups and large-scale public works projects.
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