DPFP Scraps Talks with Ruling Bloc on Gasoline Tax Cut

The Yomiuri Shimbun
Democratic Party for the People leader Yuichiro Tamaki asks questions during a House of Representatives Budget Committee meeting on Tuesday.

TOKYO (Jiji Press) — The opposition Democratic Party for the People has decided to scrap its talks with the ruling Liberal Democratic Party-Komeito coalition on lifting the freeze on the so-called trigger clause to enable a temporary gasoline tax cut, DPFP leader Yuichiro Tamaki said Tuesday.

In light of Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s responses to questions at a Diet meeting earlier in the day, the DPFP determined that the government and the ruling bloc have no intention of lifting the freeze.

“It’s extremely regrettable that there has been no clear political decision” by the prime minister, Tamaki told reporters.

With a government measure to alleviate the impact of sudden changes in fuel prices set to expire in April, Tamaki said, “There’s no point in continuing the talks without the prospect of activating the trigger clause [for a gasoline tax cut] in May and after.”

During the House of Representatives Budget Committee meeting, Tamaki argued that if the prime minister does not decide now to lift the freeze on the trigger clause, a gasoline tax cut would not be possible in time for May.

But Kishida remained cautious, saying only that he would consider it as a matter of urgency.