With Japan's public debt snowballing, the government is gearing up efforts to review national and local-level finances under what has been dubbed the "Trinity Re- forms" plan. But with differences within the government still unresolved, there is little likelihood of a conclusion in the near future.

Q. What are the Trinity Reforms?

A. Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi plans to carry out three reforms at the same time: reducing national subsidies to local governments; transferring some of its tax revenue sources to those local authorities; and reviewing its tax grants to them.