'Creative' rules for work hours urged


A government panel called Thursday for rethinking regulations on working hours to boost industrial competitiveness.

In an interim report, a subpanel of the government’s industrial competitiveness council urged the introduction of a new system that requires businesses to increase flexibility in the way employees work and pay only a certain amount of salary regardless of working hours.

Members of the council are studying growth strategy in the fields of employment and human resources.

In the 15-page report, the panel proposed establishing a flexible working hour system mainly for high-level specialists to help them increase creativity.

The panel also proposed studying fresh measures to maintain workers’ health by providing them with breaks during their working hours.

The administration of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe plans to reflect these proposals in the government’s growth strategy to be revised in mid-2014 after consulting with the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare, government sources said.

The report also proposed popularizing job cards that contain a person’s professional record, including job training, in an effort to support job seekers.

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