Government to focus on supplementary budget in upcoming Diet session

REUTERS/file photo
An exterior view of the Japanese Diet building in Tokyo.

The government is expected to put all its efforts into passing a second supplementary budget for fiscal 2022 in the extraordinary Diet session to be convened on Oct. 3, withholding the submission of bills over which the ruling and opposition camps are likely to clash.

Meanwhile, the opposition is poised to press the ruling parties over issues concerning the Unification Church.

The 69-day session will run through Dec. 10.

“We need to discuss high prices and economic stimulus measures more than anything. We want to have constructive discussions in the Diet,” the Liberal Democratic Party Diet Affairs Committee Chairperson Tsuyoshi Takagi told reporters on Wednesday.

The government plans to narrow the number of bills to be submitted to the extraordinary session to about 18.

It has already decided not to submit a bill to revise the Immigration Control and Refugee Recognition Law that was expected to change detention guidelines for foreigners who overstay their visas.

The government probably wants to avoid the possibility of deliberations descending into turmoil, with opposition parties likely to denounce the government’s handling of a case in which a Sri Lankan woman died in March 2021 while being detained by the Nagoya Regional Immigration Service Bureau.

The government is expected to prioritize passing a fiscal 2022 supplementary budget to finance measures to combat rising prices. It is set to draw up a new comprehensive economic package by the end of October and submit a supplemental-spending bill in late November.

The government will also seek to amend the Infectious Diseases Law, to make it mandatory for large medical institutions to provide treatment in the event of future infectious disease outbreaks.

Meanwhile, opposition parties including the Constitutional Democratic Party of Japan (CDPJ) plan to press Cabinet ministers and others with links to the Unification Church and its related organizations.

According to a senior CDPJ member, they will first call for the resignation of Daishiro Yamagiwa, the minister in charge of economic revitalization.

Diet affairs committee chairpersons of six opposition parties, including the CDPJ, Nippon Ishin no Kai and the Democratic Party for the People (DPFP), confirmed at a meeting Wednesday that they would ask the ruling parties for the reasons behind the decision to hold a state funeral for former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and to reveal the full costs involved.

CDPJ Diet Affairs Committee Chairperson Jun Azumi said opposition parties will join forces to debate the issue in the Diet. “I think it’s going to be a pretty tense start, so we opposition parties are set to unite our efforts,” Azumi said.

On Wednesday, Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirokazu Matsuno announced the plan to convene an extraordinary Diet session at meetings of the Rules and Administration committees for both the House of Representatives and House of Councillors.