• Kyodo News


A Liberal Democratic Party panel on Wednesday thrashed out its own stimulus package, featuring a ¥5 trillion extra budget for this fiscal year to address the surging yen and falling stock prices, LDP lawmakers said.

The package includes steps to front-load public works projects, expand employment adjustment subsidies for companies and extend the Eco-point subsidy program for environmentally friendly home appliances.

To finance the package, the LDP proposes using ¥1.5 trillion, which it would collect by selling independent administrative corporation assets, as well as ¥1.72 trillion in reserve funds in the fiscal 2010 budget and a surplus from the fiscal 2009 budget. It would also issue fresh government bonds.

In a related move, policy chiefs from the LDP and other opposition parties, including New Komeito and Your Party, agreed Wednesday that bold economic steps must be taken immediately to tackle the strong yen and plunging stocks.

They plan to visit the prime minister’s office Thursday to ask the administration to act quickly.

Also on Wednesday, LDP President Sadakazu Tanigaki named the party’s secretary general, Tadamori Oshima, as vice president, party members said.

Nobuteru Ishihara, currently chairman of the party’s organization and campaign office, is a possible candidate to replace Oshima.

Former Defense Minister Yuriko Koike and Yoshimasa Hayashi, former minister in charge of economic and fiscal policy, are also possible candidates to take up the top three leadership posts in the LDP.

The new executive lineup is expected to be launched as early as Thursday.

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