Japan political parties’ spending down 18% in 2020

TOKYO (Jiji Press) — Total expenditures by political parties in Japan in 2020 fell 18.4% from the previous year to ¥66,007 million, an internal affairs ministry report showed on Friday.

Due to the novel coronavirus crisis and lack of large-scale national elections, publicity spending fell 84.5% and election-related spending was down 66.6%, according to the report based on political funds statements submitted by the parties to the ministry.

Combined expenditures by 2,889 entities that submitted political funds reports, including political parties and politicians’ fund management bodies, decreased 21.7% to ¥90,626 million. Total incomes slipped 5.6% to ¥103,710 million.

By political party, the ruling Liberal Democratic Party was the biggest spender, at ¥18,555 million, down 23.3 pct. The party reported ¥21 million in election-related spending, which includes costs for canvassing and printing posters, down 97.1%.

The party’s publicity expenditure sank 90.3%.

No election-related spending was reported by Komeito, the LDP’s junior coalition partner, or by opposition Nippon Ishin no Kai (Japan Innovation Party) in 2020.

The Japanese Communist Party saw its election-related spending fall by 86.8%.

The LDP also came top in income, excluding carry-over funds from the preceding year, at ¥24,081 million, down 1.7%. The JCP came second at ¥20,288 million, down 0.8%, with Komeito third at ¥12,198 million, down 5.3%.

In September 2020, two opposition parties—the Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan and the Democratic Party for the People—were realigned into the current CDP.

The CDP’s income totaled ¥7,077 million, of which state subsidies accounted for 55.1%.

Income at the current DPFP, which consists of those who chose not to join the CDP, came to ¥1,519 million.

Nippon Ishin depended on state subsidies for 80% its income. At Reiwa Shinsengumi, over 50% of its income came from donations from individual citizens.