補正予算見直し 景気への配慮が欠かせない

The Yomiuri Shimbun(Oct. 8, 2009)
Don't imperil economy during budget review
補正予算見直し 景気への配慮が欠かせない(10月8日付・読売社説)

A review of a supplementary budget for this fiscal year by the administration of Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama is entering the final stage.
 鳩山内閣による今年度補正予算の見直し作業が大詰めを迎えている。

The government has so far squeezed 2.5 trillion yen from the 14.7 trillion yen extra budget compiled by the previous administration.
 総額14・7兆円のうち、これまでに2・5兆円の執行を停止することが決まった。

But the prime minister wants more money wrung from the budget and has told his ministers to find additional fat to trim. However, many government bodies have been less than willing to comply with Hatoyama's request. Some observers suspect the government might not be able to achieve its target of cutting 3 trillion yen from the budget by the time it finalizes the review by the end of next week.
 鳩山首相はさらに上積みするよう指示したが、これ以上の削減に難色を示す府省も多く、来週中の最終取りまとめで、目標の3兆円に届くか微妙な情勢という。

We fully agree with the drive to cut wasteful budget spending. However, we think the government could consider redirecting the money it has scraped together not only to the main budget for the next fiscal year, but also for effective stimulus measures that can be quickly put in place.
 予算の無駄にメスを入れるのは当然だが、これで生じる財源は来年度予算に回すだけでなく、速やかに有効な景気刺激策に充てる発想があっていいだろう。

The Oct. 15 deadline for ministries and agencies to resubmit their budgetary requests for the fiscal 2010 budget is approaching. This task appears to be more important than the extra budget review to the Hatoyama Cabinet for carrying out its pet policy of budgetary reform.
 予算改革を掲げる鳩山内閣にとって、本番とも言える来年度予算の概算要求の再提出期限は、今月15日に迫っている。

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Big test lies ahead

To implement pledges the Democratic Party of Japan made in the House of Representatives election, such as the introduction of a new child allowance system and basically making public high school education free, the government intends to review budgetary requests made under the previous administration led by Prime Minister Taro Aso.
 子ども手当や高校授業料の実質無償化など、衆院選で掲げた新政策を実施するため、麻生内閣当時にまとめた概算要求を抜本的に作り替える。

Unlike the supplementary budget, which was hastily cobbled together, the government can expect to have a much tougher slog as it dissects the 2010 budget, which contains funding for many essential projects that directly affect people's daily lives. Cabinet members, at the urging of Hatoyama to change from "budget-padding" ministers to "budget-assessing" ministers, are facing a crucial moment.
 大急ぎで策定された補正予算と違い、本予算は、国民生活との関連が深く、見直しははるかに難しい。「要求する大臣から査定する大臣になれ」とハッパをかけられた各閣僚は正念場だ。

The Hatoyama Cabinet is about to be put to the test over whether it can compile a budget big enough to implement new policies, while facing the prospect of a massive tax revenue shortfall expected to total 4 trillion yen to 5 trillion yen due to the economic downturn.
 景気の低迷で、4兆円~5兆円もの大幅な税収減が確実視される中、新しい政策を盛り込みながら適正規模の予算要求が作れるかどうか。鳩山内閣の手腕が早くも問われることになろう。

In revising the 2009 supplementary budget, the Construction and Transport Ministry set aside the highest amount of 890 billion yen, followed by 480 billion yen at the Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Ministry and 440 billion yen at the Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry.
 今回発表された補正予算の府省別執行停止額は、多い順に国土交通省8900億円、農林水産省4800億円、厚生労働省4400億円などとなっている。

Measures to be scrapped include a 330 billion yen project by the transport ministry to widen two-lane highways to four lanes, and a farm ministry fund used to help consolidate farmland, which had a 300 billion yen price tag.
 2車線の高速道路を4車線に拡幅する事業3300億円(国交省)や、農地の大規模化を促す基金の全額3000億円(農水省)などが対象となった。

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Utmost care needed

There could be no doubting that the project for large-scale farmland, for example, does not need to be anywhere near the top of the government's to-do list.
 確かに、農地の規模拡大などは、一刻を争って実施に移す必要がある事業とは言えまい。

But the problem is that cutting these projects could have repercussions for the economy. The unemployment rate remains above 5 percent. Small and midsize companies are facing severe financial difficulties.
 だが、問題は景気への影響である。失業率は5%台で高止まりしており、中小企業の資金繰りは依然苦しいままだ。

Under these circumstances, road-related and other public works projects could stimulate the economy to a certain extent. Calls for providing greater employment security also remain strong.
 こうした状況においては、道路関連などの公共事業は一定の景気刺激効果があり、雇用確保への支援を求める声も根強い。

What impact would a 3 trillion yen cut in the extra budget generate? One estimate suggested the nation's gross domestic product for this fiscal year would fall 0.4 percentage point.
 仮に補正予算を3兆円削減するとどうなるか。今年度の国内総生産(GDP)を0・4%押し下げるとの試算もある。

The Hatoyama Cabinet should exercise utmost care on economic matters. If signs emerge the economy is worsening, the administration must act quickly through such measures as a new stimulus package.
 鳩山内閣は景気動向に細心の注意を払うべきである。腰折れの恐れが出てきた場合は、新たな景気対策を打ち出すなど、迅速に対応しなければならない。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 8, 2009)
(2009年10月8日01時05分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2009-10-08 10:53 | 英字新聞

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