Policymaking Efficiency Aided “Abe’s TPP Success,” Kato Quoted in Straits Times
Prime Minister Abe’s prolonged tenure, Research Director Sota Kato told the Straits Times, resulted in a concentration of policymaking powers in the Prime Minister’s Office and better policymaking efficiency.
“The political had been such,” he said, “that that I could never imagine the administration ever overcoming the strong opposition of the farm lobby and the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries to conclude the TPP.”
“Abe resigns: Japan's longest-serving leader leaves behind much unfinished business,” Straits Times
COVID-19 Hampered Abenomics, Hayakawa Tells Reuters
Many businesses have become even more inclined to hoard cash than spend on new innovations since the COVID-19 outbreak, Senior Fellow Hideo Hayakawa told Reuters. This has hobbled the reforms needed to sustain Japan’s economic growth—the third arrow of Abenomics.
“Abenomics fails to deliver as Japan braces for post-Abe era,” Reuters
Senior Fellow Hayakawa Tells Reuters Pandemic May Boost Inflation
In an interview with Reuters, Senior Fellow Hideo Hayakawa said the coronavirus is boosting the amount of money flowing into Japan’s economy. This could fire up inflation and achieve what years of the Bank of Japan’s ultra-loose monetary policy failed to do.
“Pandemic May Fire Up Japan’s Inflation, Doing What Cenbank Could Not, Economist Says,” Reuters
Hayakawa Quoted in Asia Times
An article on the Tokyo Foundation for Policy Research website by Senior Fellow Hideo Hayakawa on the role of central banks during the COVID-19 pandemic was quoted by the Asia Times.
As an example of unconventional stimulus measures to prop up the economy in the midst of the coronavirus outbreak, Hayakawa notes that the Bank of Japan was, in effect, conducting monetary financing to support the government’s deficit spending policies.
“Abe Running Out of Levers as Pandemic Resurges,” Asia Times
Profile of Senior Fellow Hideo Hayakawa
Japan Times Cites Kobayashi’s Emergency Recommendations
Emergency proposals to address the economic fallout from the coronavirus crisis by Research Director Keiichiro Kobayashi and Motohiro Sato issued in March were cited in a Japan Times article detailing the roles of a new government coronavirus subcommittee, of which Kobayashi is a member.
The article quoted a number of recommendations, such as having the government lease hotels and other lodgings and convert them into temporary quarantine stations for those who test positive but have no symptoms or are only mildly ill—a policy with the added benefit of financially supporting the tourist industry.
“Japan’s New Coronavirus Panel Aims for More Clarity and Balance,” Japan Times
“Addressing the Economic Fallout from the Coronavirus Crisis: Emergency Proposals by Economists in Japan”
China Economy Faces Big Hurdles, Ke Long Tells NHK World
Although the Chinese economy rebounded in the second quarter after registering −6.8% growth in January–March, Senior Fellow Ke Long says that stimulus measures and investment projects are not enough to revive an economy that is reliant on external demand.
Rising diplomatic tensions with the United States and other countries are impeding China’s recovery, which will materialize only by reviving smaller companies to promote employment and domestic demand.
Beijing, though, has done nothing to help private households, Ke said, adding that instead of decentralizing the economy, the Xi Jinping administration has sought to recentralize it.
“Expert: China May Struggle to Maintain GDP Growth,” NHK World
Ke Long Points to China-Related Risks in Nikkei Article
In an article detailing the ruling Liberal Democratic Party’s watered-down statement on whether or not to invite Chinese President Xi Jinping following China’s adoption of a new Hong Kong national security law, Senior Fellow Ke Long pointed to the need to be “conscious of China-related risks” in reevaluating Japan’s reliance on crucial parts and equipment but also the importance of developing a strategy with mutual benefits, such as combining “Japanese brand power” with Chinese production capacity.
“Japan’s Ruling Party Torn over Xi Jinping Invitation,” Nikkei Asian Review
Profile of Senior Fellow Ke Long
Koike Reelection Likely, Kato Tells Straits Times
Research Director Sota Kato tells the Straits Times that Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike’s chance of being elected is "very, very high," regardless of her first-term accomplishment, as "incumbents have never lost in previous Tokyo elections."
"Tokyo Governor Election Race Kicks Off," Straits Times
Profile of Research Director Sota Kato
Research Director Kobayashi Offers Insights on Ways to Reopen the Economy
In an interview with NHK World “Biz Stream,” Research Director Keiichiro Kobayashi emphasized the need to bump up testing for COVID-19 so that businesses can reopen safely and successfully.
Kobayashi, one of four economists tapped to join the panel advising the Japanese government’s response to the coronavirus pandemic, pointed to five priorities, namely, (1) expand testing, (2) provide ample financial support to citizens, (3) encourage the shift to online and remote work, (4) reexamine business models, and (5) create a body to promote international cooperation on a coronavirus response.
“Testing is Key to Jump-Starting Japan’s Economy,” NHK World–Japan
Profile of Research Director Keiichiro Kobayashi
Majority Sees Halting Spread of COVID-19 Is Higher Priority than Preserving Civil Liberties, Senior Data Scientist Crabtree Writes in the Atlantic
A survey conducted by Senior Data Scientists Charles Crabtree and three other researchers revealed that Americans are willing to tolerate civil-rights violations in order to confront the pandemic, regardless of party affiliation. Such bipartisan support for rights-restricting COVID-19 responses, the Atlantic article notes, could smooth the path for constitutional erosion.
“Red and Blue America Agree That Now Is the Time to Violate the Constitution,” The Atlantic, March 25, 2020
Profile of Senior Data Scientist Charles Crabtree