Public Policy Planning & Consulting Co. (SEISAKU-KOUBOU) is a public policy consulting firm based in Tokyo, covering broad policy areas such as economic policy, fiscal policy, regulatory policy, administrative reform, international trade and investment, etc.
PPPC provides consulting and briefing services to the clients in the central/local governments, Diet, local assemblies and the private sector.

This blog is aimed at providing general information, latest updates and some of our analytical reports about Japan's public policy in English.
The contents include;
- updates on some important government councils, especially those in which our executive officers serve as the members,
- weekly reports on latest news in Nagata-cho, the political center in Japan, (partially).
- analytical reports and articles by our members and distinguished experts outside the firm,(partially).


This Week’s “Nagata-cho” (18-25.Feb, 2014)

 Last week on February 18, the ruling coalition parties, in eye of
passing the initial budget FY 2014 within this fiscal year,
unilaterally decided to hold a central hearing on the budget on
February 25 in the Lower House Budget Committee despite persistent
oppositions from the opposition camp.
 Beforehand, local hearings had been held in Kofu and Kagoshima on
February 21, where local leaders voiced requests for countermeasures
for natural disasters like heavy-snow or construction of roads.

*The state of deliberations in both Houses and committees are
 available from the following websites.
 House of Representatives Internet TV:
 Live broadcasts and video recordings of the deliberations in the
 House of Councillors (Japanese only):

 Meanwhile, the ruling parties also suggested schedules for voting on
the budget legislation in the Budget Committee and plenary session of
the Lower House on February 28 to the opposition parties. If the
ruling camp is able to pass the budget through the Lower House and
send it to the Upper House by February 28, the budget will
automatically be passed into legislation after 30 days even if the
Upper House decides otherwise for the Constitutional clause #60-2
providing priority of the Lower House. The opposition parties rejected
the schedule and in return requested to hold intensive discussions for
four days with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s attendance. The ruling
Liberal Democratic Party has taken a negative stance on the schedule

 Opposition parties, led by Democratic Party of Japan, had planned to
submit a counterproposal jointly in the beginning, but Your Party and
Japan Restoration Party started moves to submit their own original
counterproposal bills. So DPJ held a meeting on February 21 and
suggested a joint struggle with People’s Life Party and Yuinotoh,
then each party reserved final responses.

 On reforms on Board of Education in local governments which the
ruling LDP and New Komeito have had different ideas, a subcommittee of
LDP finalized its draft bill on Feb 18 and passed the intraparty
proceeding on Feb 19. The bill entails plans to establish a full-time
appointed position and gives personnel authority over board members to
mayors/governors and other ideas. Although it was approved by the
party officially, there remain internal concerns that the reform may
infringe political neutrality of education and that the board members’
two years terms are too short. Such details will be elaborated in
discussions with the minor coalition partner New Komeito.

 The interparty discussions between LDP and Komeito started on Feb 20.
As Komeito, stressing political neutrality of education, roughly
accepted the reform plan in principle, the focus of discussions will
likely be legal framework of “council on comprehensive education
measures (tentative)”, name of the new position and its terms,
conditions for dismissing board members, etc. Komeito’s concerns
include (1) excessive mayoral/gubernatorial authority through the new
panel, (2) personnel authority of mayors/governors must be carefully
implemented, and (3) establishment of the new panel should not be
compulsory but be decided by municipalities as it may impose burdens
on municipalities.


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