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Finance Minister Kiichi Miyazawa said Friday he will wait and see how the Finance Ministry is to share its policy-planning authority with the proposed Financial Agency.

His remarks came the day after the Liberal Democratic Party and New Komeito agreed not to strip the ministry of its policy-planning function for financial system crises.

How exactly the power-sharing will be specified in a bill is “a matter of wording,” Miyazawa told a regular news conference after a Cabinet meeting. “I have no comments in particular to make at this stage.”

Under the political deal, the Financial Agency, to be set up in July 2000, would bear the primary responsibility in planning how to handle financial institution failures and systemic crises.

Miyazawa said it is not necessary to punish Eisuke Sakakibara, vice finance minister for international affairs, who last month remarked that the idea of separating the ministry’s fiscal and financial policy-planning functions is nonsensical.

Sakakibara has already apologized for the remark as inappropriate, and the government has clarified that the comment was “very regrettable,” Miyazawa said. Sakakibara’s words angered politicians because the LDP and opposition parties were in the middle of talks over the issue.

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