Finance Minister Hiroshi Mitsuzuka indicated Jan. 14 he does not see an immediate need for new stimulus measures to help prop up the flailing stock market. Authorities are viewing the situation with keen interest and will keep a close eye on movements in the stock market, Mitsuzuka told a news conference. “What is important now is to swiftly pass the supplementary budget for the current fiscal year at the start of the regular Diet session, which begins next week, to ensure that there will be no gaps in the economy,” he said. This should be followed by the prompt enactment of the state budget for fiscal 1997 that will be submitted to the Diet session, Mitsuzuka added.The government should make efforts to carry out the sweeping reforms it has promised, such as fiscal reconsolidation, financial system reforms and other deregulation measures, he said. “The message the market is sending is that it wants us to promptly carry out various reforms, and we must answer this call,” the finance chief said.Mitsuzuka’s comments were in line with those made Jan. 13 in Singapore by Prime Minister Ryutaro Hashimoto, who said he would make efforts to properly manage the economy through such steps as prompt execution of the supplementary budget.

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