• Kyodo

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Cabinet ministers on Friday played down remarks made the previous day by a close aide to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe hinting at a delay of the consumption tax hike long planned for October.

The government has maintained that the consumption tax will be raised from 8 percent to 10 percent unless the economy suffers a shock on the scale of the global financial crisis triggered by the 2008 collapse of U.S. investment bank Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc.

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