Japan May Consider New Stimulus Package For COVID-19-Hit Economy, Minister Says By Reuters

© Reuters. Japan’s minister in charge of administrative reform and regulatory reform, Taro Kono, attends a press conference in Tokyo

By David Dolan and Tim Kelly TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan may consider new economic stimulus, including a possible fourth additional budget, as the government extends the state of emergency amid a record surge in coronavirus infections, it said on Thursday a prominent cabinet minister. “Suddenly, the demand is gone, so I think the government, if necessary, will be willing to pump money into the economy,” Taro Kono, the minister of administrative and regulatory reform, said in an interview at the Reuters conference. Next. Japan has done better than the United States and Europe in handling the coronavirus outbreak, but the government must also consider growth because “we cannot kill the economy,” Kono said. Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga extended the Tokyo-area state of emergency to seven more prefectures on Wednesday amid criticism that his government had acted too slowly to curb the pandemic. Those emergency measures could last longer than the one-month period initially set by the government, Kono said. “If necessary, the government will think about extending it, of course. We need to find the balance between managing COVID-19 and managing the economy,” he said. The government, which last month approved a third supplemental budget for the fiscal year through March to fund an additional $ 708 billion in stimulus spending, has so far pledged to spend about $ 3 trillion to help the economy recover. from the pandemic-induced recession. Japan has the heaviest debt burden in the industrialized world, with public debt more than 2.5 times annual economic output. For more information on the Reuters Next conference, click here or www.reuters.com/business/reuters-next To watch Reuters Next live, visit https://www.reutersevents.com/events/next/register.php

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