Japan is currently presented with a golden opportunity — which may well be the last one — to revive its economy thanks to the growing optimism fostered by Abenomics.
There is, however, no lack of stumbling blocks that may prevent us from achieving that goal, such as significant demographic decline, steep increase in social security costs, energy supply issues due to the suspended operation of nuclear power plants, and concerns about the current-account deficit becoming permanent.
Consequently, in order to create a bright future and hand over a vibrant economy and society to the future generation, the government, business and the people must each undertake efforts to revive Japan, taking into account the interest of Japan as a whole.
Based on the above consideration, Keidanren, under the leadership of Chairman Sadayuki Sakakibara, released a document entitled "Toward the Creation of a More Affluent and Vibrant Japan" on January 1, 2015, to present its vision for Japan in the year 2030.
This document recognizes "innovation" and "globalization" as the main sources of economic vitality and describes in concrete terms the image of Japan in that year. Issues that need to be addressed by the government, businesses, and the people are also laid out and the paths toward solving them are identified.
The document proposes that Japan in 2030 should possess the following four attributes:
- Affluent and vibrant national life
- A population of not less than 100 million living in attractive cities and localities
- A solid foundation enabling the economy to grow strongly
- Contributing to the prosperity of the world by providing solutions to global problems
It is also proposed that, having the above objective in mind, Japan must become
(1) a nation in which younger generation of Japanese can take pride, exercise their can-do spirit, and carve out a future full of hope, as well as (2) a nation worthy of trust and respect by the world, by establishing a society where hard work is rewarded.
Solving in a sound manner the 31 policy issues listed in the document will make it possible to attain the following economic and fiscal goals.
Firstly, Japan can achieve sustainable economic growth of about 3% in nominal terms and about 2% in real terms through reforms such as enhancing its productivity based on innovation and securing overseas demand through its globalization. As a result, Japan's nominal GDP will grow to 833 trillion yen or about 7 million yen per capita in 2030.
Secondly, primary balance will become positive in 2020 and the long-term outstanding public debt to GDP ratio will be gradually reduced through fiscal consolidation effort, including the comprehensive reform of social security and tax.
A quantitative assessment of Japan's industrial structure in 2030 is also presented.
Keidanren will hereafter energetically deploy activities aimed at solving issues mentioned in the document.