Regarding the story “IMF urges gradual consumption tax hike” in the Feb. 12 edition, yes, Japan has the fastest aging population and a dwindling workforce due to a decreasing birthrate, and with limited immigration the economic indicators seem gloomy.
However, if policymakers continue to dish out solutions that mainly suit the people of their own age group, we will always have lopsided proposals.
The tax structure in Japan is still not as high as in the Nordic countries, but what one should not ignore is that Japan still has a very high number of millionaires and they are definitely not all of working age. Japan should consider dishing out pension, health and other social benefits like subsidized public services to the elderly based on their individual financial health. When a 75-year-old can afford to make multiple trips a year to different countries for holidays, the salaryman in Tokyo should really ponder whether he still needs to shoulder their pension and social welfare expenses at the cost of his own family and his own nation’s future.
The opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are the writer’s own and do not necessarily reflect the policies of The Japan Times.