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Executives' Comments  Press Conferences Chairman Nakanishi's Statements and Comments
at His Press Conference

March 22, 2021

Complete Lifting of State of Emergency Declaration

The decision to lift the state of emergency declaration must have been extremely difficult. I perceive it as a judgement to lift the declaration for a time because medical service systems had taken shape, and I support the government's action. We need to remain alert to factors such as new COVID-19 variants and the effects of vaccines. Another state of emergency declaration may be issued depending on infection rates.

The business community understands the government's overall decision-making, and will cooperate and follow the same path. Today, Keidanren has already urged its member companies to continue measures including utilization of remote work and limiting numbers of staff dining together.

Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics

I understand that the decision not to allow overseas spectators at the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics was also very tough, and was made to prioritize spectator safety. Although the economic loss will be great, holding sports events like the Olympics and Paralympics in such challenging times is a significant achievement in itself.

Spring Labor-Management Negotiations

Naturally industries and companies will each have different responses, based on the impacts of COVID-19. I recognize that in this year's negotiations, labor and management in each enterprise have been aware of their duty to seek ways of maintaining momentum for wage increases and explored various measures as they engaged in meaningful discussions.

There is no great difference of opinion between Keidanren and the Japanese Trade Union Confederation (JTUC-RENGO) on the importance of maintaining wage increase momentum. I hope that, based on actual circumstances, labor and management will properly discuss matters such as improving union members' working conditions.

Relations with US and China

The US is Japan's sole ally, and Japan relies heavily on the US in security matters, but this does not mean that the two countries take exactly the same position on policies relating to China. There are certainly some security issues, but China is a key neighbor of Japan, and we have strong economic ties. We cannot deal with China based on fixed thinking about optimal courses of action. With full awareness of US-China hostility in the background, we need to exercise wisdom, make public- and private-sector efforts to broaden multifaceted channels for bilateral dialogue, and proceed with talks. We face an era of building such new diplomatic relationships.

Kashiwazaki-Kariwa Nuclear Power Plant

(In response to a question about security lapses at Kashiwazaki-Kariwa Nuclear Power Plant)
This is a most regrettable situation. We will closely monitor Tokyo Electric Power Company's response moving forward.

Management of Personal Information and Data

Internet data flows are borderless, yet some countries are venturing to build such borders. By obliging companies to store data domestically, disclose source codes, and so on, such countries are seeking to corral data within their own borders. Amid the imposition of such protectionist data policies and the emergence of practical issues, there is a need to further deepen forward-looking discussion about how to bring out the benefits of digitalization.

The World Economic Forum plans to hold a Global Technology Governance Summit next month to discuss topics including cross-border data handling and data management bodies. Japan is actively promoting the concept of "data free flow with trust." I hope that Japan will lead discussion on not only data-related rule-making, but also creation of digital society mechanisms.

(In response to a question about the situation that enabled employees of a Chinese affiliate to access personal information pertaining to users of the Line messaging app)
The actual circumstances are currently under investigation, and I would like to refrain from comment at this time.

Executives' Comments