The government will take a flexible stance during discussions with the ruling parties over postal privatization in a bid to bridge the divide over the contentious issue, Chief Cabinet Secretary Hiroyuki Hosoda said Monday.

Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi shut the door on making any concessions when he delivered a key Diet speech Friday. Tsutomu Takebe, secretary general of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, had suggested a possible postponement to splitting the state-backed Japan Post.

Hosoda, a key coordinator of the issue for the government, said Monday, “We have no particular prejudgment on how the coordination with the ruling parties will proceed.”

One of the key sticking points in the government’s plan is whether to split Japan Post into four business units at the outset of the planned 10-year privatization process, expected to start in April 2007.

The government last September said it will split the public corporation in April 2007. Takebe indicated Sunday that he might not oppose postponing the split as long as it comes “eventually” within the 10-year period.

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