Press Conference by ASO Taro, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Finance, and Minister of State for Financial Services
(Tuesday, January 21, 2020, 11:38 am to 11:45 am)
[Questions and answers:]
Last week, Minister of Internal Affairs and Communications TAKAICHI Sanae said during a press conference that she had asked the FSA to consider, working together with the Ministry of Finance, moving in the direction of making the linking of My Numbers and savings accounts at financial institutions mandatory. There’s also been talk of reconsidering the system within three years of its introduction. I’d like to ask for your opinion on these topics.
Regarding the assignment of a My Number, I thought of this idea when I was Minister of Internal Affairs and Communications, so it has been 10 plus years since then. However, it’s never been in widespread use. The fact is, everyone has a My Number card, and are told to keep it safe, because it’s important. Then, people tend to avoid using it. It functions as an identification card, so It is used by many old people who have let go of their driver’s licenses. But can you think of any other purposes that have been served by this card? There’s no one who has been asked to present their My Number card. That’s why they don’t use it. Because of this, it ultimately spread to only to a small percentage, despite considerable promotion efforts. There have been suggestions for using it for various other things, but such has given rise to many commentaries questioning how it will impact personal information protection, discouraging all plans aimed at popularized use. Seeing as we have this system, it would be extremely convenient if people could just use that one card for everything. I’d support the idea of financial institutions asking people to present their My Number card when they open an account. I’d like to see it used for many kinds of things. If we make more use of something like this for various purposes, as long as it’s easy to use, it would be convenient. It could be used in place of a credit card and an insurance card, or it would allow residential registration procedures to be completed from many places. Now, with the spread of IT technology, I think a My Number card could be used for all kinds of purposes, and that’s why the FSA has also been promoting moving in a direction toward its proactive use since some time ago, so we hope they will accept our cooperation.
So you’re saying you are in favor of making the linking of My Numbers and savings accounts at financial institutions mandatory?
Yes, I have been saying that since some time ago.
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