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仕分け第2弾 中長期の戦略的視点が重要だ

The Yomiuri Shimbun (Apr. 26, 2010)
Govt must avoid haste when trimming waste
仕分け第2弾 中長期の戦略的視点が重要だ(4月25日付・読売社説)

It is crucial to thoroughly cut the wasteful use of taxpayer money by independent administrative institutions. However, medium- and long-term strategic perspectives are most important and should never take a backseat to a short-term cost-effectiveness view.
 独立行政法人の税金の無駄遣いを徹底して削減することは無論、大切である。しかし、目先の費用対効果にこだわるあまり、より重要な戦略的視点を忘れてはなるまい。

The Government Revitalization Unit, which is tasked with cutting wasteful public spending, on Friday began its second round of discussions to screen state-funded programs.
 政府の行政刷新会議が、事業仕分けの第2弾の作業を開始した。

During the four-day round, the unit will scrutinize 151 programs at 47 independent administrative institutions that are under the jurisdiction of the Cabinet Office and nine ministries, which are among the 104 such institutions overseen by the government. The panel will judge whether the programs should, for example, either be abolished, have their budgets reduced, or be transferred to private organizations or local governments.
4日間にわたり、104の独法のうち、10府省が所管する47法人の151事業を対象に、「廃止」「縮減」「民間移管」「地方移管」などを判定する。

On Friday, the first day, panel members called for budget cuts and a review of the management structure of Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology, saying the institute has been spending too much on office expenses in connection with the opening of its planned graduate school and on employee salaries.
 初日は、沖縄科学技術研究基盤整備機構について、大学院大学の開校準備の事務経費や職員給与が多すぎるとして、予算の縮減と管理運営体制の見直しを求めた。

On the Japan International Cooperation Agency, which is charge of dispatching Japan Overseas Cooperation Volunteers and providing the government's official development assistance to other countries, the reviewers concluded JICA needs to further cut employee salaries, overseas allowances and travel expenses. The panel also judged that JICA should return its unused assets to state coffers.
 青年海外協力隊の派遣や政府開発援助(ODA)を実施する国際協力機構(JICA)については、職員給与や在外手当、旅費の一層の節減、不要資産の国庫返納などが必要と結論づけた。

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Cozy relationships

It is an urgent task to review the cozy relationship among government ministries, independent administrative institutions and other corporations. Currently, in a practice known as amakudari, retiring bureaucrats parachute into positions at independent administrative institutions that have relationships with their former offices, or officials of independent administrative institutions take jobs at related companies and corporations after retirement. In return, independent administrative institutions, companies and corporations receive orders for programs with favorable conditions in the form of discretionary contracts, or they receive subsidies.
 所管府省から独法、あるいは独法から関連企業・法人にOBが天下りする。その見返りに、独法や企業・法人は、随意契約などで有利な条件で事業を受注したり、補助金を受け取ったりする。こうした癒着の見直しは急務だ。

In cases where similar programs are being carried out by separate independent administrative institutions or by the institutions and local governments, abolishing or integrating the institutions or transferring the programs to local governments would help implement programs more efficiently and correct redundant administrative efforts.
 独法同士または独法と自治体が類似した事業を行っている場合、独法を統廃合し、事業を地方に移管すれば、事業の効率化や二重行政の是正に役立つだろう。

Meanwhile, the unit should be cautious about reform that is mere number-juggling, namely integrating or abolishing science and technology research and development corporations without thorough consideration.
 一方で、科学技術の研究開発法人を安易に統廃合する「数合わせ」の改革には、慎重であるべきだ。

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Some cases need more funds

There must be instances in which more, not less, budgetary resources should be allocated, if they are judged essential from the viewpoint of increasing international competitiveness, which is indispensable for a nation that relies on science and technology.
科学技術立国に欠かせない国際競争力を高める観点から、重要だと判断すれば、予算を拡充すべき事業もあるはずだ。

The unit's program screening is foremost a method that has produced a degree of good results in cutting wasteful budgets in local governments.
 そもそも事業仕分けは、地方自治体の無駄な予算の削減で一定の効果を上げた手法だ。

However, it is outrageous and unreasonable for the panel to draw its conclusions by majority rule after less than an hour of discussion on the fate of state-funded programs, which are extremely costly and complicated, and have an impact on the entire country.
 はるかに事業費が巨額で、仕組みも複雑なうえ、国全体に影響する事業の是非について、わずか1時間足らずの議論を経て多数決で結論を出してしまうやり方は、乱暴であり、無理がある。

As in the unit's first screening last autumn, in which fiscal 2010 budgetary requests were scrutinized, the current round is fully open to the public and is being broadcast live on the Internet.
 仕分け作業は、2010年度予算の概算要求を対象にした昨秋の第1弾と同様、全面公開され、インターネットで生中継された。

Amid the free-falling approval rating of the Cabinet of Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama, the government and ruling Democratic Party of Japan apparently have the ulterior motive of using the program screening as a tool to pump up the administration's public image. However, any attempt to make the screening a political show, which only plays to the gallery, must not be tolerated.
 鳩山内閣の支持率の低下に歯止めがかからない中、政府・与党には、仕分けを政権浮揚のカードにしたい思惑が働いている。大衆受けを狙った政治ショーにすることは許されない。

The government plans to compile a draft for reforming independent administrative institutions next month at the earliest, based on the conclusions it reaches during the current program screening. The government should conduct calm and prudent discussions before forming its final conclusions.
 政府は、仕分け作業の結論を踏まえて、来月中にも独法の改革案をまとめる予定だ。冷静で慎重な議論を重ねたうえで、最終結論を出すべきだろう。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, April 25, 2010)
(2010年4月25日01時06分 読売新聞)
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by kiyoshimat | 2010-04-26 08:13 | 英字新聞

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