A blue-ribbon subcommittee on revisions to the taxation system basically agreed Friday that securities transaction and brokerage taxes should be abolished, or at least reduced, beginning in fiscal 1998. The subcommittee is to draw up an interim report by the end of November for the general meeting of the Tax Commission, according to subcommittee head Masao Honma, a professor at Osaka University. The general tone among participants was that reduction of the two taxes is necessary to bring them into line with with those in other industrialized economies as the “Big Bang” deregulation of Japan’s financial system approaches, Honma said.

As the nation’s financial sector becomes more liberalized and foreign exchange laws are relaxed in April, some in the finance business fear Tokyo’s capital markets will be disadvantaged if its tax burdens exceed those of other overseas markets.

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