Japan PM orders govt to launch new panel to tackle deflation
TOKYO, April 9 — Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda told his government today to set up a new panel to examine the economy and prices as part of ongoing efforts to overcome deflation and revive the economy.
Noda issued the instruction at the national strategy council of ministers and business leaders aimed at addressing long-term policy issues such as economy, trade and energy.
Bank of Japan Governor Masaaki Shirakawa will join the new panel as an observer, Economics Minister Motohisa Furukawa told reporters, in a sign the government is keeping the Bank of Japan under pressure to do more to help beat deflation.
The BOJ is expected to keep policy unchanged tomorrow, holding fire until a more thorough assessment of the economy later this month which may give clues on whether more action is needed to nudge inflation up towards its 1 per cent goal.
Political pressure for additional monetary stimulus has not subsided despite the central bank's surprise easing in February, and the BOJ does not rule out further near-term action with the economy still fragile and consumer inflation around zero. — Reuters