LDP to seek new postal-reform deal

by Reiji Yoshida

After two days of marathon talks, executives of the Liberal Democratic Party abruptly ended a meeting Tuesday night, saying the party had allowed them to negotiate more modifications to the government’s postal privatization plan.

But members strongly opposed to postal reform charged the executives with acting unilaterally because they “skipped” a necessary consensus-building procedure.

“This is not democracy. This is outrageous,” said Toshitsugu Saito of the House of Representatives.

LDP policy chief Kaoru Yosano is now expected to open negotiations with the Cabinet in a bid to win compromises from the government to secure more state involvement in the four postal entities and a holding company to be created by the post office’s privatization.

Yosano will propose that the government strengthen cross-shareholdings by privatized entities to ensure greater government control over the current postal office network, according to party sources.

Privatization opponents fear the postal-service spinoff will close a large number of loss-making post offices, especially those in rural areas.