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Prime Minister Kishida’s ‘Trigger Clause’ for Gasoline Tax Suspension Under Review: The Three Major Political Parties are Moving Forward with Discussions, Yet Doubts Remain

Japanese Prime Minister Kishida has indicated a plan to consider measures including the lifting of the freeze on the ‘trigger clause’ for halting the taxation of the additional portion of the gasoline tax. The Liberal Democratic Party, Komeito, and the Democratic Party for the People have agreed to proceed with discussions on this matter.

A ‘trigger clause’ refers to a clause intended to engage specific measures when certain circumstances or situations arise. In this case, the measure is a reduction of a portion of the gasoline tax. If applied, it is expected to curb the surge in gasoline prices.

However, in contrast, Finance Minister Suzuki has shown a cautious attitude towards lifting the freeze. The reasons have not been made clear, but it is believed that complex economic circumstances and impacts on tax revenue, among other factors, need to be considered.

On the other hand, if you are a subscriber to the Yomiuri Shimbun, you can access articles that provide detailed explanations on this issue. If you have a reader membership or family membership to the Yomiuri Shimbun, you can acquire various information.

The discussions regarding the lifting of the freeze on the trigger clause are scheduled to take place by April of next year. This will form part of the efforts towards mitigating the rise in fuel prices.

However, there are widespread doubts and concerns about Prime Minister Kishida’s policy shift. There are a plethora of difficult challenges stacked up, such as China’s claim of the right to explore in Japan’s exclusive economic zone.

Finally, Liberal Democratic Party Policy Research Council Chairman Hagioeda Koichi and Democratic Party for the People Policy Research Council Chairman Otsuka Koei have reportedly started discussions in Parliament about the issue of lifting the freeze on the trigger clause. Depending on the progress of the discussions, there may be significant impact on future gasoline price trends.


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