• Kyodo


Responding to the success of Tokyo’s bid to host the 2020 Summer Olympics, Japan’s business and political leaders on Sunday expressed hope the games will boost an economy beginning to show signs of recovery.

Tokyo’s selection on Saturday will “cheer up the Japanese people, and above all, bring courage and hope to those in areas affected by the Great East Japan Earthquake,” Hiromasa Yonekura, head of the Japan Business Federation, said in a statement.

Yonekura, chairman of Japan’s biggest business lobby also called Keidanren, said the nation’s economic recovery will be spurred on by the Games, “building on the momentum of a redeveloped Tokyo, improved infrastructure and attracting foreign tourists.”

Having watched the vote in Buenos Aires from Tokyo, Japan Chamber of Commerce and Industry Chairman Tadashi Okamura told reporters the political and business worlds united with Japan’s people to bring home the bid.

“With (the Games) adding to Abenomics, the economy is sure to pick up,” Okamura said, referring to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s set of economic policies aimed at restoring economic growth.

Senior officials of Japan’s ruling parties agreed that the decision could boost the country’s economy.

Shigeru Ishiba, secretary general of the Liberal Democratic Party, told reporters in Kushiro, Hokkaido, that the games will “have a great effect” on Japan’s economy and that their ripple effect will boost morale.

He called Tokyo’s success “an outcome achieved by the whole country and people” and added, “We will strive to be completely prepared to host (the games) in seven years’ time.”

“The government and the ruling parties will work together to meet the expectations of Japanese people and the world in terms of safety and financial security,” Ishiba said.

The leader of the LDP’s coalition partner New Komeito party, Natsuo Yamaguchi, said the games may prove “a factor” in Japan’s emergence from deflation.

Regarding Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s impending decision on raising the consumption tax, Yamaguchi said, “Even if a decision is made to raise the tax, we should overcome and utilize it as an important factor in moving out of deflation.”

Yamaguchi pledged to put efforts into improving urban functionality.”It’s important to show the world how we are recovering from the Great East Japan Earthquake,” Yamaguchi told reporters at Narita airport before leaving for a visit to the United States.

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