The government is considering making it mandatory to link the country's My Number personal identification numbers with a deposit or savings account, sources said on Monday.

The move is designed to speed up administrative procedures to distribute cash allowances, the sources said.

Internal affairs minister Sanae Takaichi has said that the government aims to introduce a bill on the linking of the social security and tax identification numbers with bank accounts to the Diet early next year.

The sources said the government will abandon an attempt to make it mandatory for My Number to be linked with every bank account, a plan which had been considered to simplify administrative procedures in times of disasters and inheritance.

The linking of My Number with bank accounts is on the agenda after local authorities took time to handle online applications for the ¥100,000 cash handout program for easing the economic impact of the coronavirus outbreak.

In a related move, lawmakers led by those in the ruling Liberal Democratic Party have submitted a bill for such linkage on a voluntary basis in order to speed up the distribution of allowances in times of emergency.

If enacted, My Number and bank account information will be registered on a list based on the consent of holders.

Internal affairs ministry data showed Monday that only 21.4 percent of all households in the country have received the cash handouts. The benefits had been paid into the bank accounts of 12.5 million households by Wednesday.

More than a month has passed since the Diet enacted the first supplementary budget for fiscal 2020 including the cash handout program, but many municipalities in urban areas, including Tokyo's 23 wards, are taking time over related tasks such as preparing to send applications to residents.

Eligible for the benefits are all people listed on the basic resident register as of April 27, including foreign residents.

The handouts for all household members are paid into a bank account specified by the head of the household.

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