’13 budget to be drafted in December

Kyodo

Finance Minister Koriki Jojima on Friday said the government will compile a draft budget for fiscal 2013 as scheduled next month, despite uncertainty over when the next general election will be held.

Since Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda is solely responsible for deciding the timing of dissolving the Lower House for a snap poll, “ministers should not make any comment” in the meantime and “we will just (continue to) do our necessary work,” Jojima told reporters.

The government usually compiles an initial state budget in late December for the new fiscal year, which begins April 1. The Diet is scheduled to start deliberations on the draft budget in January.

Many fear a delay in the process would negatively affect an already decelerating economy, but Jojima rejected such speculation, arguing “there is no (causal) relationship at all.”