Press Conference by Yuji Yamamoto, Minister for Financial Services


November 14, 2006


Given that the discussion of individual tax regimes by the Government Tax Commission starting today will probably be focused on the securities tax regime, regarding which the elimination of the reduced tax rate is now being debated, please tell us your idea, if any, about the impact to follow if it is to be eliminated, as well as about having some form of interim measure to address the impact in the event of its elimination.


Honestly, as I am convinced that under no circumstances should it be eliminated, I do not think much about what to do in the event of its elimination. We have, thankfully, seen progress in the shift from savings to investment, and are now about to embark on a shift from indirect finance to direct finance. When, however, those who are eager to make a business endeavor, which might come in various forms including, in particular, "challenge again" attempts, actually intend to make a move, especially those who do so in the form of an entrepreneurial start-up or in the setting of a regional economy, the current situation is still such that it is quite difficult to raise capital only by indirect finance. Being so situated, we need to have a direct-finance-friendly perspective, which cannot be had without understanding stocks, which understanding is generated as an extension of real securities trading that, to that end, must be flourishing. One view that corresponds to this standpoint is: the policy of tax rate reduction to 10%, though it is supposed to be a temporary measure, still has a long way to go until the goal expected of it is achieved. It is based on such a view that I intend to keep it and feel strongly about doing so.


Please comment on the listing of Aozora Bank.


Well, I appreciate the efforts that the bank has made up until now and am also watching its development intently in anticipation that the bank should continue to make more and more management efforts in the future so as to serve intermediation functions that are sustainable, as well as its public role as a financial institution.


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