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A task force of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party has begun a review of retirement allowances given to senior central government officials, with an eye to cutting such payments, LDP sources said Wednesday.

The Administrative Reform Promotion Headquarters also seeks to cut the large retirement pay former senior government officials receive from public corporations where they have landed jobs after retiring from ministries or agencies, the sources said. Nobuteru Ishihara, state minister in charge of administrative reform, has said he will review the amount of retirement allowances given to senior bureaucrats.

The move is expected to meet strong resistance from the bureaucracy. A former Finance Ministry official who currently serves as a Diet member said government officials “work for the nation without even receiving overtime pay.” The headquarters said senior officials — including vice ministers, directors general and deputy directors general — receive around 55 million yen when they retire, some 20 million yen more than the average government employee gets.

Some members of the task force suggested that officials should retire just before taking up senior posts, getting retirement pay at the normal rate, then get a “small retirement allowance” when they finish serving in the senior posts, the sources said.

Other members argued that the government should change the way in which it calculates the amount of retirement pay for ex-bureaucrats retiring from public corporations, saying calculations should be made the same as those for ordinary government employees.

Many senior bureaucrats take up jobs after retirement at public corporations or companies operating in fields related to their former jobs. The practice is known as “amakudari” (descent from heaven).

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