Japan businesses hope for revival of COVID-hit economy under new PM

Sep 30 , 2021 12 hours ago – 22:11 KYODO NEWS

Akio Mimura, chairman of the Japan Chamber of Commerce and Industry, speaks at a press conference in Tokyo on Sept. 29, 2021. (Kyodo)

TOKYO – Business leaders in Japan voiced hope Wednesday that Fumio Kishida, the newly elected president of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, will make all-out efforts to return the pandemic-stricken domestic economy to a steady growth track as early as possible.

Kishida, who is set to replace Yoshihide Suga as prime minister during an extraordinary parliamentary session starting Monday, is expected to implement a stimulus package soon.

Masakazu Tokura, chairman of the Japan Business Federation, said Kishida will be the right leader for rebuilding the world’s third-largest economy and overcoming the COVID-19 crisis, given his experience as foreign minister and party policy chief.

“I hope Mr. Kishida will work to resolve issues such as the revitalization of social and economic activities…with a strong Cabinet and party executive lineup,” the head of Japan’s most influential business lobby, also known as Keidanren, said in a release.

Akio Mimura, chairman of the Japan Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said “specific measures for an exit strategy” are necessary to boost social and economic activities while keeping the pandemic under control at the same time.

Kishida told LDP lawmakers in a meeting after winning the party’s presidential election that he will continue to address the coronavirus pandemic and seek to forge an economic package worth “dozens of trillions of yen” by the end of the year.

Tatsuo Yasunaga, chairman of trading house Mitsui & Co. who also serves as vice chairman of the Keidanren, said he hopes Kishida will push ahead with decarbonization measures.

Beverage manufacturing group Suntory Holdings Ltd. chief executive Takeshi Niinami said he wants the new government to be formed by Kishida to examine the coronavirus response and revamp the administrative structure as soon as possible. Niinami is also a vice chairman of the Japan Association of Corporate Executives.

Cr. KYODO NEWS