19 Apr '11, 9pm

70% of Japanese surveyed say they'd be willing to pay more taxes to help pay for post-quake rebuilding

TOKYO - Japanese consumers may have to help foot the reconstruction bill after last month's earthquake and tsunami caused US$300 billion (S$374.2 billion) in damage, further burdening the hugely indebted economy, a newspaper said yesterday. It would be the first increase since 1997, though a sales tax hike had been the subject of fierce political debate before the earthquake struck as one way for Japan to dig itself out of its massive debt. The government is considering raising the tax by 3 percentage points to 8 per cent when the new fiscal year starts next April, the Yomiuri newspaper reported. "It was clear even before this disaster and the need to secure funds for reconstruction that to ensure a sustainable fiscal situation, some sort of reform of spending and revenues was necessary," said Internal Affairs Minister Yoshiro Katayama. "The debate over the fiscal situatio...

Full article: http://www.todayonline.com/World/EDC110420-0000461/Japan-...

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