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みずほ改善計画 信頼回復への道筋が見えない

The Yomiuri Shimbun October 30, 2013
Mizuho has a tough row to hoe before it can regain public trust
みずほ改善計画 信頼回復への道筋が見えない(10月29日付・読売社説)

Mizuho Bank appears to have hastily tried to end its lending scandal with lenient punishments. Given such lax punitive steps, the megabank faces a rocky path ahead to regain public trust that was lost by extending loans to gangsters.
 甘い処分で幕引きを急いだとしか思えない。これでは、暴力団員への融資で失墜した信頼の回復に向けた道は険しい。

Mizuho should show strong determination to make a fresh start, even considering an overhaul of its management system.
 みずほ銀行は経営体制の刷新も視野に、真摯(しんし)に出直す覚悟を見せるべきだ。

In connection with Mizuho’s loans to mobsters via its affiliated credit company, Orient Corp., among other entities, the bank has submitted to the Financial Services Agency a business improvement plan incorporating internal punishments and measures to prevent a recurrence of problematic lending.
 みずほ銀が、系列信販会社のオリエントコーポレーションなどを通じ、多数の暴力団関係者に融資していた問題で、社内処分や再発防止策を盛り込んだ業務改善計画を金融庁に提出した。

Fifty-four current and former executives are subject to punishment. The penalties included dismissal of two executives in charge of compliance and pay cuts for 40 other executives. Yasuhiro Sato will remain president but have six months of his salary docked. Takashi Tsukamoto will step down as chairman of Mizuho Bank but remain as chairman of the bank’s parent, Mizuho Financial Group.
 社内処分はOBを含む54人が対象だ。法令順守担当の役員2人を更迭し、他の役員も報酬を一部カットする。佐藤康博頭取は半年間の無報酬で、頭取を続投する。塚本隆史会長は辞任するが、兼任の持ち株会社会長は留任する。

Former bank President Satoru Nishibori and 11 other former executives will be asked to return executive compensation.
 西堀利・元頭取らには、過去の役員報酬の返納を求める。

The announced punishments are far from adequate as the current management will remain in place. Sato said at a news conference: “It’s extremely regrettable. We’ll deeply reflect on it.” But we cannot help but wonder whether he seriously considers his responsibility over such irregularities.
 問題を放置した経営陣を温存する中途半端な内容だ。佐藤頭取は記者会見で「まさに痛恨の極み。深く反省している」と述べたが、不祥事の責任を重く受け止めているのか、疑われても仕方ない。

A third-party committee established to investigate the Mizuho scandal criticized the bank by saying in a report, “The bank lacked awareness as an organization of the importance of tackling the task of cutting off relations with antisocial groups.”
 みずほ銀が調査のために設けた第三者委員会は、報告書で「反社会的勢力との関係遮断に組織として取り組む重要性について、認識が不足していた」と批判した。

The committee has also pointed out that the contracts on which loans were extended to mobsters failed to include a clause that excluded loans to organized crime syndicates. The bank’s response to the scandal was far too lenient.
 暴力団融資の温床となったローンの契約に、暴力団排除の条項を追加していない点も指摘した。事後対応は、あまりに手ぬるい。

The committee, consisting of three lawyers, investigated the case for only about 20 days. Some people are doubtful whether the panel spent sufficient time trying to learn the truth.
 第三者委は弁護士3人の体制で調査期間もわずか約20日だった。どこまで真相に迫れたのか、疑問視する声もある。

Correct corporate culture

It was natural that Mizuho’s business improvement plan included establishment of a special section on the elimination of organized crime groups and introduction of board directors from outside. Efforts must be made thoroughly to prevent a recurrence of similar scandals.
 改善計画でみずほ銀が、暴力団排除の専門部署や社外取締役の導入を掲げたのは当然だ。再発防止を徹底しなければならない。

Most imperative of all is to fundamentally rectify the bank’s corporate culture that has led to repeated irregularities since it was established in 2002 through the merger of Dai-Ichi Kangyo Bank, Fuji Bank and the Industrial Bank of Japan.
 最も重要なのは、第一勧業、富士、日本興業の3行統合で発足して以来、不祥事を繰り返した企業風土を根底から正すことだ。

The turf-consciousness displayed by executives for the banks they hailed from led to a serious lack of corporate governance. This could be a factor behind the bank’s failure to deal with the loan scandal swiftly.
 旧3行の縄張り意識によるガバナンス(企業統治)の欠如は深刻である。暴力団融資に迅速に対処できない一因ともなった。

There are views within Mizuho calling for the current top management to be maintained to avoid a confrontation by elements in the three former banks over the selection of their successors. Such an inward-looking attitude will not lead to establishing “one Mizuho.”
 みずほ内には、後任を巡る旧3行の対立を避けるため、トップの続投を願う声もあるという。そんな内向きの発想で、本物の「ワンみずほ」は実現しないだろう。

In its on-site investigation of the bank, the FSA accepted at face value the bank’s explanation, that “the top management did not know about [the loans to mobsters],” thereby overlooking what actually happened. Was there any malicious attempt to prevent an additional probe? The FSA should investigate the scandal again and much more strictly.
 金融庁は立ち入り検査で「経営トップは知らなかった」とする誤った説明をうのみにし、実態を見過ごした。本当に悪質な検査逃れはなかったのか。金融庁は改めて厳しく調べるべきである。

If Mizuho’s business improvement plan is found to be flawed, the financial watchdog should consider additional administrative punishments.
 みずほの改善計画に不備があれば、金融庁は追加の行政処分を検討することが求められよう。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 29, 2013)
(2013年10月29日02時05分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2013-10-31 06:32 | 英字新聞

第3セクター債 バブルの清算を加速させたい

The Yomiuri Shimbun October 29, 2013
Joint public-private firms must expedite efforts to end indebtedness
第3セクター債 バブルの清算を加速させたい(10月28日付・読売社説)

Joint public-private companies, generally known as third-sector corporations, may not be able to avoid liquidation as long as liabilities exceed assets.
 債務超過に陥った第3セクターは整理が避けられない。

Local governments operating loss-making firms in partnership with private-sector entities must waste no time in addressing the task of liquidating them—ending a negative legacy dating back to the days of the bubble economy—even if doing so will cause fiscal pain.
地方自治体は、痛みが伴っても、バブル時代の「負の遺産」の清算を急ぐ必要がある。

Bond issuance to expedite the consolidation or abolition of poorly performing third-sector corporations and businesses run solely by local governments has risen sharply recently.
 経営不振の3セクや地方公社などを整理・廃止するための地方債・第三セクター等改革推進債の発行が急増している。

Local governments issued third-sector bonds in 64 cases, with a combined value of ¥374.3 billion, during the April-September period this year.
 2013年4~9月の3セク債発行は64件、計3743億円に上った。

In the three-year period from fiscal 2009 to fiscal 2012, bonds were issued 104 times with a combined value of ¥471.4 billion, indicating how massive the issuance of bonds issued was in the first half of this fiscal year.
09~12年度の104件、計4714億円を大きく上回るペースだ。

With the issuance of third-sector bonds permitted specially for a period of five years from fiscal 2009, many local governments appear intent on issuing bonds just before the expiration of the deadline at the end of fiscal 2013.
3セク債発行は09年度から5年間の特例措置で、最終年度の駆け込みが続いたのだろう。

Third-sector bonds are issued by local governments on the basis of resolutions by local assemblies, along with approval by either the internal affairs and communications minister or heads of relevant prefectural governments.
 3セク債は、議会の議決と、総務相または都道府県の許可を経て自治体が発行する。

Issuance of these bonds enables local entities to reschedule their debts in the form of bonds, which have interest rates lower that those on other forms of debt. In addition, the central government offers preferential treatment by covering half of the interest cost by means of local tax grants, or tax allocations to local governments.
3セクの借金より低い金利に借り換えられるうえ、金利の半分は政府が交付税で負担してくれる利点がある。

It is an extremely serious situation that the number of juridical persons, such as companies, that are considered on the brink of bankruptcy stands at 639 out of 1,928 juridical persons comprising third-sector corporations and enterprises operated solely by municipalities.
 自治体が財政支援している3セク・公社1928法人のうち、実質的に債務超過状態にある団体が639法人に上るのは深刻だ。

Don’t put off problems

About 60 percent of bond issues were by land development public corporations for the acquisition of plots of land prior to public works projects. Many local government-run corporations in such fields as forestry, housing and tourism are also heavily in debt.
 自治体に代わって公共事業用地を先行取得する土地開発公社が3セク債発行の6割を占める。林業、住宅、観光などの公社も多い。

Some third-sector corporations have racked up debts surpassing their net worth after huge tracts of land they purchased during the bubble economy were left unused because planned public works projects were scaled down after the bubble burst and land prices declined.
 バブル時代に膨大な土地を抱えたものの、バブル崩壊に伴う事業縮小と地価下落により、未利用の土地が塩漬けになり、債務超過に陥るのが典型例と言える。

The vast amount of debt incurred by third-sector corporations adversely affects the fiscal health of local governments.
 3セクの巨額債務は、自治体財政にも影響する。

Third-sector business operations were the major factor behind the fiscal problems of the Yubari municipal government in Hokkaido. Because of its fiscal woes, the municipal government was designated as a body legally requiring fiscal reconstruction.
北海道夕張市が財政再建団体となったのも、3セクの失敗が一因だった。

Especially problematic is the fact that a little less than 40 percent of the 1,928 quasi-public corporations, or 716, have yet to thrash out reform programs.
 問題なのは、1928法人のうち、改革方針が未定の団体が4割弱の716法人もあることだ。

Liquidation of third-sector corporations makes it inevitable for local governments to take over the debts of the corporations. Fearing criticism for shouldering the debts, many local government heads tend to put off resolving the problem while they are in office.
 3セクの清算は自治体による債務肩代わりが必要となる。首長にすれば、その責任を問われるため任期中は問題を先送りしがちだ。

Postponing the problems, however, will certainly result in increasing burdens on the local governments and residents due to increasing interest payments and drops in land prices.
だが、先送りは、金利負担や一層の地価下落などで、結果的に自治体や住民の負担を増大させる。

Every local entity with third-sector debt problems must take up the challenge of drastically reforming the corporations by making use of the specially authorized bond issuance by the deadline at the end of March. This is prerequisite to ensuring an environment conducive to reinvigorating local economies.
 3セクの債務問題を抱える自治体は、来年3月までの特例期間を逃さず、抜本改革に取り組むべきだ。それが、新たな地域活性化策に取り組む環境整備になろう。

Obviously, liquidation must be avoided as much as possible for third-sector corporations in charge of operations directly linked with residents’ lives such as hospitals and transportation.
 無論、病院、交通など、住民生活に不可欠な事業を担う3セクの場合、安易な清算はできない。

Any further delay in heightening their business efficiency, however, will raise their indebtedness to be eventually passed on to residents.
 しかし、事業を効率化しなければ、そのツケは住民に回る。

Local governments should consult with all parties concerned about what should be done. They should provide straightforward explanations to assemblies and residents, instead of covering up the debts of their third-sector bodies.
自治体は、少なくとも3セクの債務を隠さず、議会や住民にきちんと説明し、善後策を協議すべきだ。

The Internal Affairs and Communications Ministry will, in principle, refuse local governments’ requests to extend the bond issuance deadline for third-sector corporations. However, it may conditionally allow a bond issuance if the corporations and local governments concerned are considered to be making serious rehabilitation efforts. This stance is reasonable.
 総務省は、3セク債発行期限の単純な延長はしない一方、既に改革に着手し、真剣に努力している自治体には条件付きで延長を認める方向だ。妥当な対応だろう。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 28, 2013)
(2013年10月28日01時21分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2013-10-30 06:23 | 英字新聞

活字文化の日 図書館を魅力ある知の広場に

久しぶりに納得の論説を読みました。
青空文庫というのがネットで無料公開されています。
著作権の切れた古い作品ばかりですが、楽しめます。
夏目漱石や芥川龍之介は難しいものも多いですが、比較的読みやすいですね。
(スラチャイ)

The Yomiuri Shimbun October 28, 2013
Print Culture Day a good opportunity to bury your nose in a library book
活字文化の日 図書館を魅力ある知の広場に(10月27日付・読売社説)

Today is Characters and Print Culture Day, marking the start of this year’s Book Week.
 今日は「文字・活字文化の日」だ。読書週間もスタートした。

It may be a good idea to spend time reading in a library during your day off this autumn.
 秋の休日、図書館で活字に触れるのも、有意義な過ごし方だろう。

For people who do not read often, libraries may not figure much in their day-to-day lives.
 普段はあまり読書をしない人にとって、図書館は縁遠い存在かもしれない。

Sixty-five percent of respondents to a recent Yomiuri Shimbun poll have not visited a library in the past year. Among major reasons cited for not using libraries were “having no time available to visit a library” and “do not enjoy reading.”
読売新聞の世論調査によると、この1年間に図書館を全く利用しなかった人は65%に上る。「行く時間がない」「本は読まない」といった理由が多い。

An increasing number of libraries, however, are using their ingenuity to try to attract more visitors.
 だが、最近は、多くの人に来館してもらおうと工夫を凝らしている図書館が少なくない。

The library run by the Tokorozawa municipal government in Saitama Prefecture, for instance, has introduced a system allowing people to check out or return the library’s books around the clock at any of the city’s eight convenience stores affiliated with the library.
 埼玉県の所沢市立所沢図書館では、市内8か所の提携コンビニエンスストアで、24時間いつでも、図書の受け取り・返却ができるサービスを実施している。

This is an extremely useful service for people too busy at work to visit a library during regular library hours.
 仕事が忙しく、なかなか図書館に行けない人にとっては、ありがたい取り組みではないか。

The Takeo Municipal Library of the Takeo city government in Saga Prefecture has been drawing three times as many daily visitors than before completing renovation work in April. The library is visited by many people from other prefectures.
 佐賀県の武雄市図書館は、4月に新装開館したところ、1日平均の来館者が約3倍に増えた。県外からも多くの人が訪れている。

The library modeled its interior after a large bookstore in Tokyo that features a space where customers can bury their noses in books. The library’s management has been consigned to a major rental company, which runs the library services year-round. The company allows visitors to check out CDs and DVDs for a fee and provides a corner for selling new publications.
 ゆったりとした読書スペースを備えた東京の大型書店をモデルとした。運営は、大手レンタル業者に委託した。年中無休で、CD、DVDの有料貸し出しや新刊書販売のコーナーもある。

The Takeo Municipal Library has been criticized for becoming too commercialized, but it can safely be said that it provides a good example of a library using its initiative to become more attractive.
 武雄市図書館に対しては、商業色が強すぎるという批判があるが、一方で、工夫次第で図書館の魅力が増すことを如実に示した好例とも言える。

‘Bibliobattle’ events

As stipulated by the Library Law, it should not be overlooked that the steady collection and storage of books and documents are a fundamental obligation of libraries.
 図書館法が定めるように、資料を着実に収集、保存することが、図書館の基本的責務であることも忘れてはなるまい。

The library operated by the Akita prefectural government, for that matter, has created electronic versions of about 2,000 items, including books in the public domain and materials on local history, for their conservation. They can be downloaded and read using browsing software on smartphones and other media.
 秋田県立図書館は、著作権が切れた書籍や郷土資料など約2000点を電子化して保存した。閲覧用ソフトをスマートフォンなどにダウンロードすれば読める。

Only about 20 libraries in this country employ in-house browsing or renting services of electronic books, but such services will no doubt increase in the future.
 電子書籍の館内閲覧や貸し出しを実施している公立図書館は、全国で約20館に過ぎないが、今後、そうしたサービスはますます求められるに違いない。

In addition, libraries provide a space to enable people to get together and exchange ideas. They also serve as venues for such events as lectures and art exhibitions.
 図書館には人々が交流する場としての機能もある。講演や美術展といった催しも開かれている。

Attracting great interest at present is a library-sponsored event referred to as a “bibliobattle.” Participants in the event introduce their favorite books and exchange opinions about them. In the end, the participants vote on what book they feel they would enjoy reading most. The event can give participants an unexpected opportunity to come across a great book that they would otherwise have missed.
 最近、図書館のイベントとして話題になっているのが「ビブリオバトル」だ。お薦めの本を書評し合い、投票で「最も読みたくなった本」を1冊選ぶ。意外な名著を知るきっかけにもなる。

The theme for this year’s Book Week is “Make a journey with books and journey the world of books.” Paying a visit to a library in your neighborhood can be regarded as a small journey.
 今年の読書週間の標語は、「本と旅する 本を旅する」だ。自宅近くの図書館を訪れるのも、小さな旅だろう。

A library housing a great diversity of books is a “plaza of knowledge,” where you may encounter a book beyond your expectations.
様々な本が並ぶ図書館は「知の広場」だ。思わぬ本との出合いがあるかもしれない。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 27, 2013)
(2013年10月27日01時19分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2013-10-29 06:59 | 英字新聞

メニュー偽装 「誤表示」の強弁は通らない

The Yomiuri Shimbun October 27, 2013
Hankyu Hanshin Hotels paying high price for misleading menus
メニュー偽装 「誤表示」の強弁は通らない(10月26日付・読売社説)

A hotel operator’s obstinate insistence that “it wasn’t fabrication, but rather mislabeling” is unacceptable.
 「偽装ではなく、誤表示だ」という強弁は通用するまい。

Food materials different from those described on menus were used in many dishes offered at restaurants of eight hotels operated by Hankyu Hanshin Hotels Co.
 阪急阪神ホテルズが運営する八つのホテルのレストランなどで出された多くの料理で、メニュー表示と異なる食材が使用されていた。

The false labeling went on for more than seven years, with dishes cooked with falsely advertised materials served to at least 79,000 customers.
 虚偽表示は7年以上に及び、約7万9000人に提供された。

The hotel operator made excuses during a news conference, saying “there was a lack of awareness of the need to check whether the items matched those displayed on the menus” and “our staff members were ignorant and insensible regarding [food materials].”
 阪急阪神ホテルズは記者会見で、「メニュー表示と食材が合っているかどうか、チェックする意識が欠落していた」「従業員が(食材に関して)無知・無自覚だった」と釈明している。

However, some employees said they knew the dishes offered did not use materials mentioned on the menus but that they “thought there was no problem.” It cannot be ruled out that the alleged fabrications were intentional.
 だが、一部の従業員は、料理の中身がメニュー表示と異なることを知りながら、「問題ないと思った」と話している。故意に偽装していたという疑いは拭えまい。

Examples of false labeling include a case in which Shiba shrimp was written on menus, but Vannamei prawns were actually used. The former are priced at ¥2,500 per kilogram, while the latter costs far less, at ¥1,400 per kilogram.
 虚偽表示の例は、次のようなものだ。メニューには「芝海老(えび)」と記載していたが、実際はバナメイエビだった。芝海老の仕入れ値が1キロ・グラム2500円なのに対し、バナメイエビは1400円だ。

Also, what was touted as Kujo-negi onions were found to be ordinary green and white leeks. The latter’s wholesale price is ¥800 per kilogram compared with ¥2,000 for leeks from Kujo, Kyoto Prefecture.
 「九条ねぎ」とうたっていたものは、普通の青ねぎ、白ねぎだった。普通のねぎの仕入れ値は1キロ・グラム800円で、九条ねぎの2000円より格段に安い。

Lack of compliance

The hotel operator claimed “there was no intention whatsoever of gaining profits unfairly.” But this claim cannot be taken at face value. It is astonishing that a relatively famous hotel operator apparently did not comply with the law.
 「不当に利益を上げる意図はなかった」というホテル側の主張は、額面通りに受け取れない。名の通ったホテルでコンプライアンス(法令順守)機能が働かない実態に、あきれるばかりだ。

Hankyu Hanshin Hotels has reported the case to the Consumer Affairs Agency as a suspected violation of the Law against Unjustifiable Premiums and Misleading Representations. Masako Mori, state minister for consumer affairs and food safety, said her office would “deal with the case strictly.” A thorough probe is called for.
 ホテル側は、景品表示法(優良誤認)に違反する恐れがあるとして、消費者庁に報告した。森消費者相は「厳正に対処したい」と語った。徹底調査を求めたい。

It came to light in June that roast beef originating in Chile had been misrepresented as “domestically produced beef” on the menus of restaurants at four Tokyo hotels operated by Prince Hotels, Inc.
 東京のプリンスホテルでも6月に、チリ産ローストビーフを「国産牛肉」と表示していたことが明らかになった。

In the wake of this revelation, Hanshin Hankyu Hotels investigated its hotels and discovered the menu scam.
 これを契機に、阪急阪神ホテルズが系列のホテルを調べた結果、今回の問題が発覚した。

The success of a hotel hinges on the quality of service offered. Customers pay money in exchange for enjoying delicious food made from high-quality materials.
 ホテルの生命線は、サービスの質だ。利用客は、館内のレストランで、良質の食材を使ったうまい料理に見合う料金を支払う。

Hankyu Hanshin Hotels has tarnished its own brand, which was built over many years, with its wrongdoing.
 阪急阪神ホテルズの行為は、長年かけて築いてきたブランドイメージを自ら傷つけるものだ。

Fabrication scams involving food are not uncommon. It was revealed in 2007 that a high-end Japanese restaurant in Osaka falsified the origin of its beef. The restaurant was forced to close after it later came to light that the restaurant reused food materials.
 食品を巡る偽装行為は後を絶たない。2007年には、大阪市の高級料亭で牛肉の産地偽装が発覚した。食材の使い回しなども判明し、廃業に追い込まれた。

The hotel chain operator intends to reimburse customers for the dishes made from falsely advertised materials. The refunds are said to total about ¥110 million.
 阪急阪神ホテルズは客に代金を返す意向だ。返金額は最大で約1億1000万円に上るという。

The price paid for misrepresentation is high, and regaining public trust is no easy task. Hankyu Hanshin Hotels’ scam cannot be shrugged off by those in the food industry as someone else’s problem.
 偽装の代償は大きい。信用を取り戻すのは容易でない。食品関係者は、人ごとではなかろう。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 26, 2013)
(2013年10月26日01時32分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2013-10-28 06:31 | 英字新聞

ネット配信 外国企業にも消費課税が要る

海外で無税ならば、日本でも無税にして調整するのがTPPの趣旨に合致するのではないでしょうか?
TPPの理論と完全に逆行しているではないですか^^。
税収増大だけにとらわれるとこうなります。
相手の国が黙っていないでしょう。
日本だって、国民は、ネット配信グッヅが出来るだけ安い方を望んでいるのではないでしょうか。
(スラチャイ)

The Yomiuri Shimbun October 26, 2013
Impose consumption tax on digital products distributed from overseas
ネット配信 外国企業にも消費課税が要る(10月25日付・読売社説)

An unfair situation has emerged regarding how domestic and foreign firms are taxed in the rapidly growing industry of online digital data distribution. An environment must be created in which they can compete on an equal footing.
 急成長するインターネット配信ビジネスで、国内と外国の企業との間で課税の不公平が生じている。対等に競争できる環境作りが必要だ。

The Tax Commission has started examining the advisability of imposing the consumption tax even on e-books and music provided online from overseas.
 政府税制調査会は、外国から電子書籍や音楽などを日本に配信するサービスに対しても、消費税を課すかどうか検討を開始した。

Under the current system, the tax is imposed only on domestically provided electronic information.
 現行の税制では、国内から配信された電子情報だけに消費税が課税されている。

For instance, no consumption tax applies to e-books bought by Japanese consumers on the Amazon.com online marketplace based in the United States.
例えば、米国を拠点とするアマゾン・ドット・コムのネット書店で日本の消費者が電子書籍を買った場合には、非課税扱いとなる。

If there are price differences for the same e-products due to tax, depending on whether they are provided from overseas or at home, domestic firms will be forced into a disadvantageous situation.
 同じ商品なのに、国内配信か、海外からの配信かによって消費税分の価格差が生じれば、国内企業は不利な競争を強いられよう。

The publishing and Internet industries have pointed out that such an unfair tax burden impairs the competitive environment. They have every reason to call for reexamining the tax system based on such an argument.
 出版業界やネット業界が「競争条件を歪(ゆが)めている」と指摘し、税制の見直しを求めているのはもっともである。

Such circumstances have emerged because the imposition of consumption tax is limited to domestic transactions and imports of goods. The tax is not levied on data distributed through overseas servers because they are regarded as overseas transactions of non-goods.
 こうした事態が生じたのは、消費税の対象を「国内取引」と「モノの輸入」に限定しているためだ。海外のサーバーからのデータ配信は、モノ以外の「国外取引」とみなされて課税されない。

The amount of tax revenues lost because of the no-tax rule for products provided online from overseas is said to be in the tens of billions of yen a year.
 海外からの配信が非課税のために得られなかった日本の消費税収は、年数百億円規模に達しているという見方もある。

Adverse effects of levy

The government will raise the sales tax from 5 percent to 8 percent next April. The rate is scheduled to be increased to 10 percent in October 2015. If the range of the tax’s application is left unchanged, adverse effects of the tax exemption on online products provided from overseas are expected to expand.
 政府は2014年4月に消費税率を5%から8%に引き上げる。15年10月には10%まで上げる予定だ。消費税の扱いをこのままにしておけば、非課税措置による弊害が拡大してしまう。

Such unfair taxation may accelerate the hollowing-out of industry, as Japanese digital data providers may shift their bases overseas.
 日本の配信業者が海外に拠点を移すなど、産業の空洞化を助長する一因にもなりかねない。

According to Impress Innovation Lab, Japan’s e-book market is expected to balloon to about ¥240 billion in fiscal 2017, about triple that of fiscal 2012.
 インターネットメディア総合研究所によると、日本の電子書籍の市場規模は、17年度には12年度の約3倍にあたる2400億円近くに膨らむ見通しだ。

Online information distribution is a promising growth industry. The government must accelerate work to reexamine the range of the consumption tax’s application.
 ネット配信ビジネスは、有望な成長産業の一つである。政府は、消費税の課税対象の見直しを急がねばならない。

However, a host of challenges need to be tackled, such as how to accurately grasp the online distribution prices of foreign companies.
 ただ、外国企業の日本への配信額を正確に把握できるかなど、検討すべき課題は多い。

Among other steps, it will be essential to establish a system in which Japanese tax authorities can cooperate with their foreign counterparts to share information on foreign companies.
外国の税務当局と協力し、海外企業に関する情報を共有できるようにすることなどが欠かせないだろう。

Since about a decade ago, Germany and other European Union member countries successively introduced the so-called value-added tax, which is equivalent to Japan’s consumption tax, on online distribution services provided from outside the EU.
 欧州連合(EU)では約10年前からドイツなどが順次、域外からネット配信されるサービスに日本の消費税にあたる付加価値税を課している。

Online data distributors outside the EU are required to file a business registration, which has produced certain results. Such a registration system for Japan is also worth studying.
 域外の配信業者は、事業登録が求められる仕組みで、一定の成果が上がっている。登録制は、日本でも検討に値しよう。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 25, 2013)
(2013年10月25日01時41分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2013-10-27 07:42 | 英字新聞

シリア化学兵器 廃棄には国際支援が不可欠だ

The Yomiuri Shimbun October 25, 2013
Intl assistance vital for destroying Syria’s chemical weapons
シリア化学兵器 廃棄には国際支援が不可欠だ(10月24日付・読売社説)

We hope that international assistance, both economic and diplomatic, with scrapping Syria’s chemical weapons will also help bring the country’s civil war under control.
 化学兵器廃棄に向けた経済、外交両面での国際的支援を、シリア内戦の収拾にもつなげたい。

The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons is expected to complete soon the inspection of 23 facilities that the administration of President Bashar Assad says were linked to Syria’s chemical weapons program. The OPCW will draw up a detailed work schedule for destroying the chemical weapons on the basis of its inspection results.
 化学兵器禁止機関(OPCW)は、アサド政権が申告した23か所の関連施設の査察を近く終える予定だ。査察結果に基づき化学兵器廃棄の詳細な工程表を作成する。

A joint mission of the United Nations and the OPCW has begun working in Damascus, with the goal of destroying Syria’s chemical stockpile and the equipment to produce the deadly weapons by mid-2014.
 シリアの首都ダマスカスでは、来年前半までの廃棄作業完了を目指し、OPCWと国連の合同派遣団が活動を開始した。

They will tackle the disposal of chemical weapons in cooperation with the Assad regime, but they have insufficient manpower and funds. The development of facilities to destroy the weapons has not yet started. It is essential for the international community to extend assistance quickly.
 アサド政権に協力して廃棄作業に取り組むが、要員や資金は不足している。廃棄処理施設の整備もこれからだ。国際社会による早急な支援が不可欠である。

The Norwegian Nobel Committee decided to award this year’s Nobel Peace Prize to the OPCW, probably with the aim of calling on countries around the world to extend such assistance.
 ノルウェーのノーベル賞委員会がOPCWへの平和賞授与を決めたのは、そのような支援を各国に呼びかける狙いもあろう。

The destruction of chemical weapons in Syria has been deemed extremely difficult, chiefly because the weapons have to be disposed of amid a civil war. Some of the chemical weapons facilities are located in areas where government forces and armed rebel groups are fighting. We cannot shake our concern that the personnel destroying the weapons may come to harm.
 シリアでの化学兵器廃棄が困難を極めるのは、内戦の中で作業を進めねばならないからだ。
 一部の化学兵器関連施設は、政府軍と反体制派武装勢力の戦闘地域内に位置する。作業要員に危害が及ぶ懸念も拭えない。

Ahmet Uzumcu, director general of the OPCW, is calling for a ceasefire so work to destroy the chemical weapons can proceed as planned. But it will not be easy to achieve a ceasefire anytime soon. It has been two years since the civil war began, and there is no end in sight to the fighting.
アフメト・ウズムジュOPCW事務局長は、予定通り廃棄作業を進めるには停戦が必要だと訴えている。
 だが、停戦の早期実現は容易でなかろう。内戦勃発から2年を過ぎても戦闘はやむ気配がない。

The death toll has topped 100,000, and 2 million people have become refugees. There is also the serious problem of Islamic extremist groups affiliated with the international terrorist organization Al-Qaida increasing their influence by taking advantage of the disorder in Syria.
 犠牲者は10万人を超え、難民も200万人に上る。国際テロ組織アル・カーイダ系のイスラム過激派が、混乱に乗じて勢力を拡大しているのも深刻な問題だ。

Multilateral cooperation key

We hope international peace talks will be held soon, but most of Syria’s opposition leaders said they would only take part in such talks if Assad steps down.
 和平に向けた国際会議の早期開催が望まれるが、反体制派の大半はアサド大統領退陣を会議参加の前提条件としている。

We hope both the United States, which has some influence on the opposition groups, and Russia, a supporter of the Assad regime, will do everything they can to bring about peace talks and a ceasefire.
 会議と停戦の実現に向け、反体制派に影響力を持つ米国と、アサド政権の後見役であるロシアは、最大限の努力をしてほしい。

Japan is one of the few countries in the world, together with the United States and Russia, that has the technology and experience to destroy chemical weapons.
 日本は、米露などと並び、化学兵器廃棄の技術と経験を有する世界でも数少ない国の一つだ。

Japan is now disposing of the chemical weapons abandoned in China by the Imperial Japanese Army at the end of World War II. Work has been prolonged, as it has taken longer than anticipated to find shells buried in the ground. In 2010, a mobile Japanese weapon-disposal facility began operations.
 日本は中国で、旧日本軍の遺棄化学兵器の廃棄を進めている。地中に埋設された砲弾の発見に手間取り、作業は長期化しているが、2010年には日本製の移動式処理設備が稼働を始めた。

Japan also has experience disposing of highly toxic gas due to the March 1995 sarin gas attack on the Tokyo subway system by members of the Aum Supreme Truth cult.
 オウム真理教による地下鉄サリン事件では、猛毒のサリンを処理した経験もある。

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe pledged at the U.N. General Assembly at U.N. headquarters in New York that Japan will provide “the greatest possible cooperation” for the international community’s efforts to dispose of Syria’s chemical weapons.
 安倍首相は国連総会で、シリア化学兵器廃棄への「能(あた)う限りの協力」を表明している。

Japan has contributed to the activities of the OPCW through financial aid and the dispatch of Self-Defense Forces personnel. We hope the government will extend further assistance to bring about peace in Syria.
 OPCWには、日本はこれまでも予算拠出や自衛官派遣で貢献してきた。シリア和平のため、一層の支援に努めてもらいたい。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 24, 2013)
(2013年10月24日01時41分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2013-10-26 07:40 | 英字新聞

中国大気汚染 健康被害防止の対策が急務だ

The Yomiuri Shimbun October 24, 2013
China’s worsening air pollution crisis calls for health-hazard prevention
中国大気汚染 健康被害防止の対策が急務だ(10月23日付・読売社説)

Air pollution in China is becoming more and more serious, with haze so thick in some areas that even nearby buildings cannot be seen clearly.
 間近なビルもかすんで見えない。中国の大気汚染が再び、深刻の度を増している。

It is feared that the atmospheric contamination in the country could further spread when the winter sets in, with a massive amount of coal to be burned for heating. An immediate task facing the Chinese government is to take swift measures to fight the worsening pollution.
 暖房用石炭を大量に燃やす冬季になれば、汚染拡大が懸念される。中国政府には迅速な対策が求められる。

On Monday, the concentration of PM2.5 topped the observable upper limit of 1,000 micrograms per cubic meter in Harbin, Heilongjiang Province. The airborne particles, 2.5 micrometers in diameter or smaller, are considered most harmful to health.
 黒竜江省ハルビンでは21日、直径2・5マイクロ・メートル以下の微小粒子状物質(PM2・5)の濃度が、1立方メートルあたり1000マイクロ・グラムの観測上限を超えた。

The figure far exceeds Japan’s environmental safety standard for PM2.5, which is set at an average of 35 micrograms per day.
 日本の環境基準である1日平均35マイクロ・グラムをはるかに上回る。

On Monday, all primary and middle schools were closed in Harbin, and bus service was suspended on some routes.
 市内の全小中学校は休校になった。路線バスも一部運休した。

This dire situation is not limited to Harbin. In October, the PM2.5 pollution is extending to other areas, mostly in northern China. For instance, Beijing has been blanketed with thick smog. On many days, the Chinese capital has seen its PM2.5 pollution reach the “serious” level—the worst reading on the six-grade scale of air pollution set by the authorities.
 こうした状況は、ハルビンにとどまらない。10月に入り、北部を中心にPM2・5の汚染が広がっている。北京でも、濃いスモッグに覆われ、当局が定める6段階の汚染指標で最悪の「深刻な汚染」に該当する日が続く。

There are concerns about health hazards posed by the air contamination. The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), part of the World Health Organization, has certified that PM2.5 can cause cancer, saying that its cancer-causing risk is comparable to those of asbestos and smoking.
 懸念されるのは、住民の健康被害だ。世界保健機関(WHO)の専門組織である国際がん研究機関(IARC)は、PM2・5について、「発がん性がある」と認定した。アスベストや喫煙と同じリスクがあるという。

PM2.5 particles can find their way deep into the lungs and can cause asthma and bronchitis. The IARC had every reason to assert that the international community must take quick steps to address the problem. There also are concerns about the health of Japanese residents in China.
 肺の奥まで入り込むPM2・5は、ぜんそくや気管支炎を引き起こす。IARCが早急な対策を求めたのは当然だ。
 中国で生活している邦人の健康状態も気がかりである。

Reduce pollution sources

What must be done to fight the air pollution is, first of all, to install desulfurization equipment at coal-fired power stations and factories in China, a task necessary for making the smoke from these facilities relatively cleaner. Coal-fired thermal power accounts for about 80 percent of that country’s electricity supply. It is essential to ensure that the Chinese become deeply aware of the need to spend money for environmental protection, instead of only seeking short-term profits.
 対策として、まず必要なのは、電力供給の約8割を占める石炭火力発電所や工場に脱硫装置を設置し、排煙を浄化することだ。目先の利益だけを追求するのでなく、環境対策にコストをかける意識を根付かせることが肝要だ。

Another pressing task is to reduce the air contamination caused by exhaust gases from more than 200 million cars and motorcycles on Chinese streets. Gasoline used in China contains a good deal of sulfur, a source of high-concentration pollutants. Given this, it is imperative to improve the quality of gasoline used in China.
 約2億台に上る自動車・バイクの排ガス対策も急務である。中国で使われているガソリンは、硫黄含有量が多く、高濃度の汚染物質を排出しているとされる。ガソリンの品質向上が欠かせない。

The key to success—or failure—is whether the government of President Xi Jinping will be able to reform his country’s petroleum industry, which has long been able to gain exorbitant profits by selling low-quality products, an achievement made possible through its strong political clout.
 強い政治力を背景に低品質製品で巨利を得てきた石油業界に対し、習近平政権がどこまでメスを入れられるかがカギを握る。

Japan cannot dismiss China’s air pollution as someone else’s problem. PM2.5 and other pollutants have been carried by the prevailing westerly winds to arrive in Japan, especially in the western part of the nation.
 中国の大気汚染は、日本にとって人ごとではない。PM2・5などが偏西風に乗って、西日本を中心に飛来している。

Environmental protection is an important task that Japan and China must carry out together, despite their feud over the Senkaku Islands.
 尖閣諸島を巡り、日中両国が対立する中にあっても、環境対策は、両国が協力して取り組むべき重要課題と言える。

The authorities in Beijing are scheduled to send a team of officials in charge of the problem to Tokyo by the end of the month. The Chinese government also has invited some Japanese experts to visit China. This apparently indicates a sense of urgency shared by both countries about the air pollution in China.
 北京市は月内に担当者を東京都に派遣する。日本の専門家も中国に招かれている。現状に対する中国の危機感を物語っている。

We believe Japan’s environmental know-how—the technological solutions to its own past air pollution problems—will do much to improve the situation in China.
 大気汚染を改善した日本のノウハウは中国にも役立つだろう。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 23, 2013)
(2013年10月23日01時55分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2013-10-25 07:19 | 英字新聞

貿易赤字15か月 原発再稼働で早期に歯止めを

The Yomiuri Shimbun October 23, 2013
Restart nuclear reactors to help stem snowballing trade deficit
貿易赤字15か月 原発再稼働で早期に歯止めを(10月22日付・読売社説)

Japan’s trade deficit continues to grow unabated. If the nation’s wealth continues to pour out of the country, the path toward rejuvenation of Japan’s economy will become tougher.
 貿易赤字の拡大に歯止めがかからない。国富の流出が続けば、日本経済再生への道は一段と険しくなるだろう。

The government must do everything in its power to enable Japan to rebuild itself as a trade-oriented nation.
 政府は「貿易立国」の復活に向け、全力を挙げなければならない。

Japan’s balance of trade, the difference between the monetary value of exports and imports, stood at ¥930 billion in the red in September. This marked the 15th consecutive month of a year-on-year increase in the trade deficit, surpassing the previous record of 14 straight months set 33 years ago at the time of the second oil crisis.
 輸出額から輸入額を差し引いた9月の貿易収支は、9300億円の赤字だった。貿易赤字は15か月連続で、第2次石油危機時の14か月を超え、33年ぶりに最長記録を更新した。

The trade deficit for the April-to-September first half of this fiscal year reached ¥4.9 trillion, a record for a fiscal half year.
 今年度上半期(4~9月)の赤字も4・9兆円に達し、半期として過去最大となった。

The trade deficit has primarily stemmed from the sharp rise in Japan’s imports of fuel for thermal power plants, which are being used increasingly as an alternative power source for the nation’s idled nuclear power plants. The yen’s depreciation against the dollar in recent times has also been a factor in the deficit’s expansion.
 貿易赤字の主因は、全国の原子力発電所が停止し、代替する火力発電所向けの燃料輸入が急増したことである。為替相場が円安・ドル高に振れたことも、赤字拡大に拍車をかけたと言える。

Imports of liquefied natural gas, the main fuel used for power generation, have doubled compared with just before the Great East Japan Earthquake in March 2011.
 主力燃料である液化天然ガス(LNG)の輸入額は、東日本大震災前から倍増した。

According to a government estimate, additional fuel costs, including those of LNG and crude oil needed for thermal power generation due to the mothballing of nuclear reactors, is expected to total ¥9 trillion over the three fiscal years from 2011 to 2013.
政府試算によると、LNGや石油など、原発停止による火力発電の追加燃料費は、2011~13年度の3年間で総額9兆円にのぼる見通しだ。

This extraordinary situation in which a massive amount of money for fuel imports has flowed out of Japan and into resource-rich countries in the Middle East and elsewhere cannot simply be brushed off.
 巨額の輸入代金が、中東などの資源国に流出し続けている異常事態を看過できない。

This country urgently needs to restart nuclear power plants that have been confirmed safe to operate, and lessen its excessive dependence on thermal power plants.
 安全性を確認できた原発を再稼働し、火力発電への過度な依存を改めることが急務である。

Give companies a hand

The rise in electricity rates stemming from higher fuel costs is also a serious issue. Within the service area of Tokyo Electric Power Co., electricity bills for an average-sized family have risen by about 30 percent compared with before the 2011 quake and tsunami disaster—an increase of nearly ¥1,800 a month.
 燃料費の増大に伴う電気料金の上昇も深刻だ。東京電力の管内では、標準家庭の料金が震災前より約30%、月額で1800円近く値上がりした。

The electricity rate for corporate users has risen by an even wider margin. This situation could accelerate the hollowing-out of industry as businesses shift production bases abroad to avoid rising operating costs at home. There also are fears that a vicious circle may develop in which Japan’s exports decline as a result of the hollowing-out of industry, pushing the trade deficit even higher.
 企業向けの電気料金は、家庭より値上げ幅が大きい。企業がコスト増を敬遠し、生産拠点を海外に移す「産業空洞化」が再び加速しかねない状況だ。空洞化で輸出が減り、貿易赤字がさらに拡大する悪循環も懸念される。

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has indicated he plans to make Japan “the best country in the world for companies to do business,” by promoting his growth strategy, which includes deregulatory measures. To achieve this, it is essential to establish a system that guarantees a stable supply of cheap electricity.
 安倍首相は規制緩和など成長戦略を推進し、日本を「世界で一番企業が活躍しやすい国」とする考えを示している。その実現には、安価な電力の安定供給体制を確立することが不可欠だろう。

It is worrisome that while imports of solar panels and smartphones from China have increased, Japan’s exports to newly emerging economies in Asia and elsewhere have remained sluggish.
 中国からの太陽光パネルやスマートフォンの輸入が増える一方、アジアなど新興国向け輸出が伸び悩んでいるのは気がかりだ。

The government should cut the effective corporate tax rate and help companies boost their international competitiveness. The public and private sectors also should unite in the promotion of infrastructure exports, including nuclear power plants and high-speed railway systems.
 政府は法人税実効税率を引き下げ、企業の競争力強化策を後押しすべきである。官民連携による、原発や高速鉄道などインフラ輸出の促進も求められる。

The bottom line is that private businesses produce attractive goods and services with their own originality and ingenuity. We hope they will rise to the challenge and emerge victorious in the international competition.
 肝心なのは、民間企業が創意工夫で魅力的な商品やサービスを生み出すことである。チャレンジ精神を発揮し、国際競争を勝ち抜いてもらいたい。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 22, 2013)
(2013年10月22日01時32分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2013-10-24 06:51 | 英字新聞

靖国参拝見送り 的外れな中韓両国の対日批判

The Yomiuri Shimbun October 22, 2013
Anti-Japan stance by China, S. Korea over Yasukuni Shrine unhelpful
靖国参拝見送り 的外れな中韓両国の対日批判(10月21日付・読売社説)

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe decided not to visit Tokyo’s Yasukuni Shrine on the occasion of its Oct. 17-20 annual autumn festival. Instead, he simply made a monetary offering to the shrine for a sacred masakaki tree branch traditionally used in Shinto rituals.
 安倍首相は、靖国神社の秋季例大祭中の参拝を見送り、神前へ真(ま)榊(さかき)を奉納するにとどめた。

His decision not to pay his respects at the shrine after refraining from making visits earlier this year in the shrine’s annual spring festival and on Aug. 15, the date marking the end of World War II, was to prevent frayed ties with China and South Korea from further deteriorating.
 春季例大祭と終戦記念日に続いて、今回も参拝を見送ったのは、中国、韓国との関係がさらに悪化する事態を避けるのが目的だ。

China and South Korea regard Yasukuni Shrine as a symbol of Japan’s wartime militarism, as it memorializes Japan’s war dead along with “Class A war criminals,” including former Prime Minister Hideki Tojo, who were executed after being condemned by the International Military Tribunal for the Far East, also known as the Tokyo War Crimes Tribunal. They strongly oppose visits by prime ministers or Cabinet members.
 中韓両国は、極東国際軍事裁判(東京裁判)で処刑された東条英機元首相ら「A級戦犯」が合祀(ごうし)されている靖国神社を軍国主義の象徴とみなして、首相や閣僚の参拝に反対している。

Paying tribute to those who died in the war is purely an internal affair, and no country should interfere.
 もとより、戦没者をどう追悼するかは、国内問題であり、他国から干渉される筋合いではない。

As the Yasukuni issue has become a diplomatic problem, however, the prime minister’s decision to avoid visiting the shrine this time is understandable.
 だが、外交問題化している以上、首相の判断は妥当だろう。

The prime minister is said to strongly desire to pay his respects at Yasukuni Shrine, but he must pay scrupulous attention to the feasibility of making such a visit.
 靖国神社に参拝することへの首相の意欲は強いとされる。なお慎重な対応が求められる。

In this connection, it is highly regrettable that neither China nor South Korea has shown a positive attitude after Abe’s decision to forgo a visit to the shrine.
 残念なのは、中韓両国に、首相の参拝見送りを前向きに受け止める姿勢が見られないことだ。

Referring to Abe’s masakaki monetary offering in lieu of visiting the shrine, a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman said Beijing opposes “any type of action [by the prime minister] of paying tribute at any time,” effectively saying that China equates the masakaki offering with a visit to the shrine. South Korea’s Foreign Ministry also expressed “deep concern and regret” over Abe’s offering to Yasukuni Shrine.
 中国外務省は、首相の真榊奉納について「いつ、いかなる方式で参拝しようとも反対する」と述べ、事実上の参拝と見なす考えを示した。韓国外交省も「深い憂慮と遺憾の意」を表明した。

Tacit U.S. message

Since the end of the war, Japan has continued to follow the path of peace and contribute to the international community. We wonder whether both China and South Korea have deliberately shut their eyes to this fact.
 日本は戦後一貫して平和国家として歩み、国際社会にも貢献してきた。中韓両国は、そのことに目をつむっているのではないか。

The criticism by Chinese and South Korean leaders against the Abe administration for “veering to the right” may be largely motivated by a desire to maintain their own domestic leadership on the strength of surges of popular anti-Japanese sentiment.
 中韓の指導者が、安倍政権の政治姿勢を「右傾化」と批判するのは、反日世論を利用し、自らの求心力を維持する狙いもあろう。

As a result of the escalation of distorted anti-Japanese criticism, Japanese investment in China has dwindled, and the adverse impact has spread in the Chinese economy.
 しかし、的外れな対日批判をエスカレートさせた結果、日本から中国への投資が落ち込み、中国経済への悪影響も広がっている。

Abe has persistently called for China and South Korea to hold summit talks. The leaders of China and South Korea should respond favorably to Abe’s overture and move to break the impasse. They should shift away from a “mutual harm” approach to a path leading to “mutual benefits.”
 安倍首相は、首脳会談の開催を繰り返し呼びかけている。中韓首脳はこれに応じ、事態打開に動くべきだ。「互損」から「互恵」へ転換を図らねばならない。

The prime minister’s decision to forgo a visit to Yasukuni Shrine may also have been out of consideration for the United States, which is concerned about the standoff between Japan and its two neighbors.
 今回の参拝見送りの背景には、日中・日韓の対立を懸念する米国に配慮した側面もある。

Early this month, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel laid wreaths at Chidorigafuchi National Cemetery for the war dead near Tokyo’s Imperial Palace. A state-run facility with no religious affiliation, the cemetery accommodates the remains of the war dead whose identities are not known.
 今月初旬に来日した米国のケリー国務長官とヘーゲル国防長官は千鳥ヶ淵戦没者墓苑を訪れ、献花した。無宗教の国立施設である墓苑は、先の大戦の戦没者のうち、身元不明などで引き渡し先のない遺骨を納めている。

The visit by Kerry and Hagel to Chidorigafuchi is believed to be a tacit U.S. message to the Japanese government to exercise caution on the issue of visits to Yasukuni Shrine by the prime minister and other Cabinet members.
 千鳥ヶ淵訪問は、靖国神社参拝について慎重な対応を求めるメッセージとも見られている。

Public opinion is divergent over how the souls of the war dead should be consoled. Criticism of those who played leading roles in the war remains deep-rooted.
 戦没者の慰霊をどう考えるかは、日本国内にも様々な意見がある。戦争指導者への批判も根強い。

Under the circumstances, in-depth discussions should be held on the advisability of building a state-run facility that would enable everyone to pay tribute to the memory of the war dead without harmful consequences.
だれもが、わだかまりなく戦没者を追悼できる国立施設の建立について議論を深めるべきだ。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 21, 2013)
(2013年10月21日01時18分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2013-10-23 07:51 | 英字新聞

イラン核協議 外交的解決へ動き出すのか

The Yomiuri Shimbun October 21, 2013
Is a diplomatic solution on horizon over Iran’s nuclear program?
イラン核協議 外交的解決へ動き出すのか(10月20日付・読売社説)

Is it possible that the problem of Iran’s nuclear development program is moving toward a diplomatic solution? We should keep a close eye on this issue.
 イラン核問題が外交的解決に向け動き出すのかどうか。注視したい。

In recent talks in what is referred to as P5-plus-1 countries, the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council—the United States, Britain, France, Russia and China—plus Germany, Iran has come up with a new proposal for constraining its nuclear program in return for easing international economic sanctions that have battered the Iranian economy.
 イランが、国連安全保障理事会常任理事国(米英仏露中)にドイツを加えた6か国との協議で、経済制裁緩和を条件に核開発を抑制するという新提案を行った。

The six powers have highly evaluated the Iranian proposal as an “important contribution” that could be conducive to accelerating future talks. The release of a joint statement at the close of the talks on Oct. 15 and 16, the first of its kind, also appears promising.
 6か国側は協議への「重要な貢献」と評価した。共同声明が初めて発表されたのも良い兆候だ。

Although details of the talks have not been disclosed, Iranian officials said Tehran is set to rein in uranium enrichment levels. Iran appears to have made some concessions to the six major powers, which have demanded that Iran stop producing uranium enriched to 20 percent, a level that could lead to the manufacture of nuclear weapons.
 詳細は未公表だが、イラン側によるとウラン濃縮の「レベル」を制限するという。核爆弾製造につながる濃縮度20%のウランの生産停止を要求してきた6か国に、イランが歩み寄ったとも言える。

Talks between Iran and the six countries have been held since 2008, but no progress has been made because of Tehran’s negative attitude.
 イランと6か国の核協議は、2008年から行われてきたが、イランは消極的態度に終始し、進展は見られなかった。

During the stalemate, Israel hinted at the possibility of attacking Iran’s nuclear facilities. With the heightening of tensions, a war of nerves racked the countries involved.
 その間、イスラエルがイランの核施設を攻撃する可能性をちらつかせた。緊張が高まり、関係国間では神経戦が続いてきた。

Whether Iran’s new proposal will push the talks forward remains uncertain.
 今回の新提案を機に協議が進展するのか、なお不透明だ。

Iran has taken a more positive stance since Hassan Rouhani, a moderate, took office as president of the Islamic republic in August in the wake of growing public discontent with the country’s severe economic hardships.
 イランが積極姿勢に転じたのは、経済困難に対する国民の不満の高まりを背景に、穏健派のロハニ大統領が選出されてからだ。

Obama’s leadership tested

Economic sanctions imposed at the initiative of the United States and European countries have halved Iran’s oil exports, the key source of revenue, causing inflation to spiral upward unchecked.
 イランでは、米欧主導による経済制裁を科せられているため、主な収入源の原油輸出が半減し、急激なインフレが進んでいる。

It seems the new Iranian president wants to resuscitate the faltering economy by having the United States and Europe lift the sanctions after offering a compromise.
 大統領には、核協議で米欧と妥協を図って制裁を解除させ、経済立て直しを図りたいとの思惑がうかがえる。

Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who has a final say in the country’s decision-making, basically appears to be in favor of Rouhani’s policies.
最終決定権を握る最高指導者ハメネイ師も、そうした方針を容認しているのだろう。

However, the leadership of U.S. President Barack Obama will now be tested.
 オバマ米大統領の手腕が問われる局面でもある。

Although Washington has had a hostile relationship with Tehran since Iran’s 1979 Islamic Revolution, Obama, in recent talks with Rouhani by phone, reached an agreement with the Iranian president to work together for a diplomatic solution to the nuclear problem.
米国は革命後のイランと敵対的な関係を続けてきたが、オバマ氏はロハニ大統領と電話で会談し、核問題の外交的解決を目指すことで一致した。

If the United States embarks on actions to improve its relations with Iran, one of the Middle East’s major powers and a leading oil-producing country, the U.S. position in the region could be strengthened.
 米国が、有数の産油国である地域大国イランとの関係改善に踏み出せば、中東における戦略的立場の強化に役立とう。

Negotiations with Iran, however, must be based on the premise of stopping Iran from going nuclear.
 ただ、イランとの交渉には、核武装化の阻止があくまでも前提とならねばならない。

With the nuclear talks scheduled to resume next month, it is imperative for the six major powers to have Iran show its commitment through “meaningful, transparent and verifiable actions” never to undertake any project to develop nuclear weapons, as demanded by the United States.
 核協議は来月に再開されるが、米国が主張するように、イランから、核兵器開発を決して行わないことを示す「有意義、透明かつ検証可能な行動」を引き出すことが肝要である。

Israel, for its part, does not disguise its intense distrust of Iran, saying Tehran “should be tested by its actions, not its proposals.”
 イスラエルは、「提案ではなく、実際の行動」を見極めるとし、イランへの不信感を隠さない。

Whether fears of Israel launching a military strike against Iran can be dispelled depends largely on how Tehran behaves from now on.
 イスラエルによる軍事攻撃の懸念を払拭できるかどうかは、イランの今後の出方にかかっていると言えよう。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 20, 2013)
(2013年10月20日01時26分 読売新聞)
[PR]

by kiyoshimat | 2013-10-22 08:43 | 英字新聞