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Abe should detail road map to restoring nation’s fiscal health

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There is apparently little chance of the government achieving its key fiscal reform target set for the fiscal year that starts in April 2025.

But Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s administration keeps promising that state finances will regain their health without offering any specific road map toward that goal.

The administration’s attitude toward this crucial policy challenge is extremely irresponsible. Abe needs to start answering the many questions about his fiscal rehabilitation agenda.

If the goal of securing a primary budget surplus in fiscal 2025 is achieved, the government could finance its various policy expenditures, including spending on health care, nursing care, education and disaster response programs, with its tax revenues alone without the need of fresh borrowing.

A primary surplus--a budget surplus before interest payments on past debt--would slow growth in the debt load.

If Japan’s nominal economic growth rates fail to rise well above the mid-1 percent range, the average level since Abe returned to power at the end of 2012, the government would remain stuck with a primary deficit, according to........

© The Asahi Shimbun