Japan's government ministries will make budget requests totalling a record 99.2 trillion yen ($1.02 trillion) for the fiscal year from next April, sources familiar with the figures told Reuters, adding to its already strained public finances.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is struggling to balance the need for economic stimulus and the need to rein in the country's public debt, which is double the size of its GDP - the heaviest such burden among the industrialised nations.
The budget requests, which must all be submitted by Friday, compare with 92.6 trillion yen earmarked for this fiscal year.
The Ministry of Finance in recent years has typically trimmed the requested total by several trillion yen when it prepares its draft budget in December.
The process is complicated this year, however, as no ceiling has been set for the budget draft due to a pending sales tax increase, while Abe's government faces pressure for more spending to stimulate the economy.
Poisonous mushrooms mistakenly sold at a highway rest area in Takashima, Shiga Prefecture, have caused food poisoning to at least two people, the Shiga Prefectural Government said Sunday. (Japan Times)
Shanghai raised a "yellow" warning for rains and strong winds, the third highest of four levels, as Tropical Storm Fung-Wong approached the city after leaving at least a dozen dead in the Philippines and Taiwan. (Bloomberg)
Tokyo Metrpolitan Police on Monday arrested two suspects, including a former organized crime member, on drug charges inside an apartment in Shinjuku Ward, reports Nippon News Network (Sept. 22). (Tokyo Reporter)
Two vending machines were torched and the money taken from them in Tokyo's Katsushika Ward on Saturday morning, bringing to 19 the number of vending machines which have been destroyed by fire in the area since Sept 15. (Japan Today)
Police in Tokyo said Friday they are looking for a man who sprayed a 17-year-old girl with a liquid resembling paint thinner as she walked home on Wednesday night-the third such incident to occur in the area since last month. (Japan Today)