The national burden ratio — the portion of taxes and social welfare premiums in national income — is projected to rise to 35.9 percent in fiscal 2005, up 0.2 percentage point from fiscal 2004, the Finance Ministry said Wednesday.

The increase, for the second straight year, stems from a planned halving in fiscal 2005 of the 1999 fixed-rate income tax cuts at national and regional levels, the ministry said.

The ratio of taxes against national income is forecast at 21.5 percent in fiscal 2005, against 21.4 percent in fiscal 2004.

The ratio of social welfare premiums against national income is estimated at 14.4 percent, up from 14.2 percent.

National income is expected to total 377.4 trillion yen in fiscal 2005, up 4.4 trillion yen from the previous year.

The potential national burden ratio, which is calculated by adding fiscal deficits to taxes and social welfare premiums, is expected to decrease by 0.4 point to 44.8 percent in fiscal 2005.

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