postal delivery services, the (privatized) entity (in charge) will be legally obliged to continue to provide them,” Koizumi said, indicating this entity would receive preferential treatment over actual private-sector firms seeking to enter the mail delivery fray.

Under the government’s privatization plan scheduled to begin in 2007, Japan Post will be split into four entities, separately handling postal delivery, savings, life insurance and postal network management services.

But the government has yet to win the support of the Liberal Democratic Party because many LDP members claim they fear the plan will make it difficult to maintain uniform postal services nationwide.

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