OECD Economic Surveys: Japan 1997
28 Nov 1997
; 9789264154292 (print)
This 1997 edition of OECD's periodic review of Japan's economy includes a special feature on the sustainability of the social security system.
Assessment and recommendations
I. Recent trends and prospects
-A moderate recovery...
-... driven by exports...
-... and, until recently, by private investment
-In contrast, private consumption remained subdued...
-... while both public investment and stockbuilding depressed demand
-With import growth slackening...
-... the external surplus has started to rise
-Given the slow improvement in the labour market...
-... wage and price increases stay low
-Short-term outlook: the recovery could regain some momentum
II. Monetary policy and the financial system
-With interest rates extremely low...
-... capital outflows accelerated, pushing down the exchange rate...
-... and leaving monetary conditions extremely easy
-However, money and credit growth has remained weak
-Despite some asset prices stabilising...
-... balance sheet difficulties persist for certain financial institutions
-To address these problems a new regulatory environment is being introduced
III. Fiscal policy in a medium-term perspective
-How serious is Japan’s public finance situation?
-The need for medium-term fiscal consolidation
-The need for some rationalisation of public spending
-The need for increased budget transparency
IV. Regulatory reform
-The scope of deregulation to date
-Scope for further action
V. The sustainability of the social security system
-The scale of the problem
-The effects on public finances
-The policy response
-Chronology of main economic events
Statistical annex and structural indicators