[Index] [Introduction] [Japan's Future] [Policy Agenda] [Action 21] [Reference]

An Attractive Japan

For the Years Until 2010

In order to create a truly affluent and animated civil society in the twenty-first century, it will be necessary to lay a hardware and software foundation for growth. This foundation should be put in place before 2010, when the Japanese population is projected to peak.

Based on this understanding, Keidanren proposes the implementation of the Phase-One Program for Creating a New Japan by 2010. Known as "Action 21," the program incorporates 21 tasks grouped under 10 agenda items. It was drawn up under the assumption that the public and private sectors will each shoulder appropriate responsibilities in a division of labor. The program has ample potential to produce a vigorous economy, with many new businesses born as a result, and bring into being a truly affluent way of life in a free and lively society.

It is to be noted that for the program to be implemented smoothly, the economy needs to sustain 3% annual growth from now until 2010. Provided that effective use is made of the private sector's vitality, Keidanren is firmly convinced that Japan has the potential to achieve the required steady economic growth.

The Phase-One Program for Creating a New Japan by 2010 (Action 21)

  1. Construct a regulation-free society by implementing thoroughgoing deregulation and eliminating opaque administrative guidance
    1. Thorough review of regulations

  2. Promote administrative, fiscal, and tax reforms to realize a transparent, small, and efficient government
    1. Adjustment of the ratio of direct to indirect taxes
    2. Slimming down the central government and reorganizing ministries and agencies
    3. Improvement of the transparency of administration

  3. Relocate the functions of the capital and establish a decentralized state
    1. Relocating the functions of the capital

  4. Develop a rich national land that effectively utilizes natural and regional features
    1. Installation of new national arteries, improvement of local transportation networks, and upgrading of cities
    2. Improvement of major airports equipped to handle connections between international and domestic flights
    3. Improvement of telecommunications infrastructure and increased use of information technologies in public administration
    4. Construction of a recycling type of socioeconomic system
    5. Reconstruction from the 1995 Kobe earthquake and reinforcement of quakeproof public facilities

  5. Consolidate an R&D setup suited to a global front-runner
    1. Strengthening the R&D setup

  6. Foster creative human resources to construct a society that treasures diversified individuality
    1. Arranging a cease-fire in the "entrance exam war"
    2. Cultivating an environment conducive to labor mobility

  7. Build up convenient, efficient, and transparent money and capital markets befitting an international financial center
    1. Construction of a financial system underpinned by market discipline
    2. Promotion of the yen's globalization

  8. Promote measures to cope with the graying society and declining birthrate so that people can lead long lives happily and securely
    1. Helping the elderly to participate in society and constructing a nursing-care system
    2. Promotion of measures to cope with the declining birthrate

  9. Reinforce the foundation for independent activities by nonprofit civic groups in a society that is flexible and resilient
    1. Providing civic groups with a stronger social foundation

  10. Strengthen diplomatic influence and assume the international responsibilities of a dynamic global state
    1. Acquiring more diplomatic resources
    2. Taking the lead in the APEC initiative to liberalize trade and investment
    3. Promotion of economic cooperation

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