The Argument is a new feature dedicated to promoting dialogue and deeper understanding of contentious issues by introducing various viewpoints.

After being delayed twice, Japan's consumption tax will be raised to 10 percent from 8 percent on Oct. 1.

The tax hike is anticipated to dampen the economy amid worries of a global economic downturn, but proponents say that the tax hike — no matter how unpopular — needs to take place if the country is to foot the bill for its ballooning social welfare costs.