Kishida pinning hopes on big-spending tourists to revive economy

TOKYO, Oct 04 (Japan Today) - Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida pledged Monday to revive the nation's pandemic-battered inbound tourism industry by setting a new goal of increasing foreign tourists' total spending to more than 5 trillion yen annually.

In a policy speech marking the start of an extraordinary Diet session, Kishida also said the government will make use of the benefit of the Japanese yen's rapid depreciation while vowing to continue easing the country's coronavirus border controls.

The weaker yen has been driving up import prices, but Kishida expressed readiness to tackle rising energy costs, committing to "unprecedented" steps to alleviate the burden on households and companies.

With the public suffering from higher costs, Kishida said his government plans to encourage wage increases by investing 1 trillion yen over five years in human resource development in promising fields.

During Monday's speech, Kishida said his government has focused on three areas -- responses to higher prices stemming from the yen's slide, wage hikes as well as investment for economic expansion.

Inbound tourism served as a key growth driver for the world's third-biggest economy before the coronavirus spread in early 2020. Spending by overseas travelers in Japan stood at a record 4.8 trillion yen in 2019, but plummeted to about 120 billion yen in 2021.

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Oct 04 (ANNnewsCH) - 3日に召集された臨時国会。岸田総理は、所信表明演説で最優先の課題としたのが、“物価高・円安への対応”などの経済対策でした。  ...continue reading