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鳩山経済政策 マニフェスト不況を起こすな

The Yomiuri Shimbun (Nov. 17, 2009)
Don't let manifesto vows trigger economic slump
鳩山経済政策 マニフェスト不況を起こすな(11月17日付・読売社説)

If the government led by the Democratic Party of Japan sticks doggedly to fulfilling the pledges it made ahead of the latest House of Representatives election, and these efforts force the economy into a slowdown, the government will have put the cart before the horse.
 公約を守ろうと躍起になって、景気を悪化させることにでもなれば、本末転倒である。

The nation's economy has just recorded positive growth, but in our opinion this is a result of economic measures taken by the previous administration and the recovery of external demand, and the economy has been only temporarily boosted. The deflationary trend, in which falling prices cause economic stagnation, has become serious.
 日本経済はようやくプラス成長を回復したが、前政権の景気対策と外需回復で一時的に浮揚したと見るべきだ。物価下落が経済停滞を招くデフレも深刻になっている。

Nevertheless, the Cabinet led by Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama has frozen projects worth about 3 trillion yen in the supplementary budget for fiscal 2009 and also plans to cut in the fiscal 2010 budget public works and other projects that could be expected to have an immediate effect as economic stimulus measures.
 ところが、鳩山内閣は今年度の補正予算を約3兆円凍結し、来年度予算も、景気刺激に即効性が期待される公共事業などをカットするという。

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Scrap nonurgent policies
 ◆成長戦略欠くバラマキ◆

The government's approach is aimed at securing financial resources for eye-catching policies in the DPJ's manifesto for the general election, but we fear the government's stance could accelerate the cooling down of regional economies.
 政権公約に盛り込んだ目玉政策の財源を得るためだが、こうした姿勢では、地方経済などの冷え込みを加速させる「マニフェスト不況」に陥らないか心配だ。

To avoid a manifesto-induced economic downturn, the government needs to change the principle governing its policy choices from keeping the promises it made in its manifesto to coming up with measures to improve the economy. This entails a drastic review of its stated policies.
 政策選択の原則を公約優先から景気優先に切り替え、政策を抜本的に見直すべきだ。

The biggest problem is that the Hatoyama Cabinet is going ahead with the dole-out policies pledged in its manifesto without having formulated a growth strategy to realize a full-scale recovery of the nation's economy.
 最大の問題は、鳩山内閣が日本経済の本格回復に向けた成長戦略を持たぬまま、選挙公約したバラマキ型の政策を強行しようとしている点にある。

A huge drop in tax revenue is unavoidable due to the rapid worsening of the economy that began last year. We urge the government to make the tough policy decisions necessary to bring the economy back on a recovery track, by using its limited financial resources effectively, and at the same time prevent the nation's finances from further worsening.
 昨年からの景気の急激な悪化で税収は大きな落ち込みが避けられない。政府は、乏しい財源を効果的に使って景気を立て直すと同時に、財政の急速な悪化に歯止めもかけるという難しい政策運営が求められている。

However, in ministries' budget requests for fiscal 2010, the government included key policies pledged in the DPJ manifesto and left their budgets almost untouched.
 ところが、来年度当初予算の概算要求には、政権公約に盛り込んだ大型の政策がほぼそのままの規模で並んだ。

These marquee policies include 2.3 trillion yen for a child-rearing allowance, 600 billion yen for making expressways toll-free and 500 billion yen for making public high school education free. If the 2.5 trillion yen revenue shortfall that will result from the scrapping of the provisionally higher gasoline tax rate is added to these figures, it is clear that a huge amount of financial resources--about 7 trillion yen--will be needed to implement the pillars of the DPJ's manifesto.
 子ども手当2・3兆円、高速道路無料化0・6兆円、公立高校無償化0・5兆円などだ。これにガソリン税の暫定税率廃止(2・5兆円)を含めれば、7兆円に迫る巨額の財源が必要となる。

If the government insists on implementing these policies, it will be impossible for it to keep a ceiling on the fiscal 2010 budget. Hatoyama has said he will try not to issue more than 44 trillion yen worth of government bonds next fiscal year, but it seems that his administration will be unable to avoid issuing a huge amount of government bonds.
 これらの目玉政策の実施に執着するのなら、予算規模を適正な水準に抑えるのは不可能だろう。鳩山首相は来年度の国債発行額を今年度の44兆円以下にするとしているが、大幅な増発は避けられないのではないか。

When a nation's finances are in dire straits, the prices of government bonds tumble and long-term interest rates jump, which has a negative influence to the economy and aggravates the financial situation because of the increase in the cost of debt servicing. To avoid such a situation, the government should drop nonessential election pledges.
 財政危機が深刻化すれば国債価格が急落して、長期金利が跳ね上がる。それが景気にかえって悪影響を及ぼし、利払い費の増加で財政がさらに悪化する。そうした事態を避けるためにも、不要不急の公約にこだわるべきでない。

We hope the government and the Bank of Japan will take concerted actions, such as an effort by the central bank to increase its purchases of government bonds and hold down interest rates.
 日銀が国債買い入れを増やして金利上昇を防ぐなど、政府・日銀の政策協調も強めてほしい。

Of course, to restore market trust in the nation's finances, it is indispensable for the government to show its determination to pursue fiscal reconstruction, such as by raising the consumption tax after the economy recovers to secure a stable financial resource.
 むろん、景気回復後に消費税を引き上げて安定財源を確保するなど、財政再建に向けた決意を今から示すことが、財政に対する市場の信頼回復に欠かせない。

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Growth could easily stall
 ◆高成長も持続性に疑問◆

The political task to which the government must give top priority is realizing a full-scale economic recovery.
 今、最優先の政策課題は、景気の本格的な回復である。

The Cabinet Office announced Monday that the nation's gross domestic product for the July-September quarter rose 1.2 percent from the previous quarter, marking an expansion for two straight quarters. Consumer spending and exports grew, while capital investment finally turned upward.
 内閣府が16日に発表した7~9月期の国内総生産(GDP)は、前期比1・2%増と2四半期連続でプラス成長となった。個人消費と輸出が伸び、設備投資もようやくプラスに転じた。

Though the economic downturn appears to have come to a halt, it may be too early to judge that the recent growth will be self-sustaining, and that the economy is on a full-fledged expansion track.
 悪化は一段落した形だが、成長が持続して本格的な成長軌道に入ったとみるのは早計だ。

First of all, the economic recovery is mainly a result of the government's economic stimulus package and lacks a broad base. In the area of consumer spending, sales of vehicles and flat-screen TVs have certainly been brisk, thanks to government subsidies for eco-friendly cars and the so-called eco-point system designed to boost the purchase of electrical appliances. But sales of other products are slumping.
 まず、回復は景気対策の効果が中心で、広がりを欠いている。個人消費は、エコカー補助や家電のエコポイントなどで自動車や薄型テレビの販売が好調だったが、他の商品はさえない。

Winter bonuses are certain to be significantly reduced, and there are fears that deteriorating employment conditions may once again hit consumption.
 冬のボーナスは大幅減が確実で、雇用情勢の悪化で消費が再び落ち込む危険がある。

The latest GDP figure, which shows significant economic growth, may not appear quite right to many people. GDP measured in nominal terms, which more accurately reflects household and corporate sentiment, is experiencing negative growth due to declining consumer prices. Deflation is chilling household and corporate sentiment. Not a few observers believe, therefore, that the nation's economic growth will slow down in the first half of next year and will probably show negative growth under certain circumstances.
 今回の大幅なプラス成長に、ぴんとこない人も多いだろう。家計や企業の実感に近い名目のGDPが、物価下落でマイナスに沈んでいるためだ。デフレが家計や企業の心理を冷やしている。来年前半に成長が鈍り、場合によってはマイナス成長に落ち込むとの見方も少なくない。

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Economy must come first
 ◆「公約」より「景気」を◆

Under these conditions, what bothers us is the fact that public works projects, which have supported an economy that has been deteriorating since last year, declined in the July-September quarter from the previous quarter for the first time in five quarters.
 こうした中、気がかりなのは、昨年からの景気悪化で下支え役だった公共投資が、7~9月期に5四半期ぶりに前期比マイナスに転じたことだ。

According to the Cabinet Office's October "economy watchers survey," which polls those working in industries that are highly sensitive to economic conditions, respondents in construction-related businesses in rural areas said the number of public works projects had dwindled significantly.
 景気の影響を受けやすい業種の人に実感を聞く10月の景気ウオッチャー調査で、地方の建設業者から「公共工事が激減している」との声が寄せられた。

Under the principle of spending more taxpayers' money on projects closely related to people's lives, rather than on building concrete structures, touted in the DPJ's election slogan of "From concrete to people," the Hatoyama administration is slashing public works projects and shifting its political focus to the direct provision of public funds to the people in the field of welfare, among others.
 鳩山政権は、「コンクリートから人へ」の方針で、公共事業を削り、福祉など国民への直接給付に政策の重点を移している。

It is certainly necessary for the government to review the practice of building unnecessary public facilities and relying on public works projects to prop up regional economies. But if the government fails to pay consideration to regional economies hard hit by the recession, they may be dealt a fatal blow.
確かに箱もの行政や公共事業頼みの地域振興は見直さねばならない。
 だが、不況で疲弊した地方経済への配慮を欠けば、致命的な痛撃を与えかねない。

Given the current serious employment situation, some argued that the child benefits likely will be saved rather than spent if it is distributed across the board, with no relation to household income. If the program is funded by cutting other programs' budgets, the political effects will cancel each other out.
 雇用情勢が厳しい中、所得制限もないまま子ども手当をばらまいても、消費より貯蓄に回るとの指摘がある。財源が他の予算の削減なら、政策効果は相殺される。

Rather than spending more than 2 trillion yen on the child allowance program, extending the government subsidy program for eco-friendly cars and others, which had a measurable effect in the GDP statistics, might be able to more effectively stimulate consumption using less budget funds. The government must not waste a large amount of budget on projects that have limited economic effects.
 2兆円以上を子ども手当に費やすより、GDP統計で一定の効果が見られたエコカー補助などを延長する方が、少ない予算で効率的に消費刺激できるのではないか。これに限らず、公約した内需振興策は効果の検証が必要だ。
 マニフェストに固執して、経済効果の薄い事業に多額の予算を浪費してはならない。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Nov. 17, 2009)
(2009年11月17日01時21分 読売新聞)
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by kiyoshimat | 2009-11-17 09:06 | 英字新聞

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