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Japanese PM names cabinet

Friday, September 02, 2011 - 02:01

Sept. 2 - Japan's sixth prime minister in five years, Yoshihiko Noda, names his cabinet as he faces up to major challenges at the helm. Lily Grimes reports.

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Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda receives the stamp of approval from Emperor Akihito. He becomes Japan's sixth prime minister in five years. Noda, who was Finance Minister in the previous cabinet, says his government will cut spending, as Japan struggles to deal with massive debt. (SOUNDBITE) (Japanese) JAPANESE PRIME MINISTER YOSHIHIKO NODA, SAYING: "We will reduce spending, look out for non-tax incomes, and even sell things owned by the government. When that is not enough however, it may become necessary to look into tax reform. In that case we will use the laws and plans announced to guide us." One analyst says there is little difference between how the two main parties would deal with the country's problems. (SOUNDBITE) (English) SOPHIA UNIVERSITY ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR OF POLITICAL SCIENCE KOICHI NAKANO SAYING: "You're basically going to have the same DPJ government turning into an LDP government, and it's going to use methods that are tested and have worked in the past. Terribly time-consuming, but it starts with a round of administrative reform, government expenditure cuts, and then after that you say 'Well, we suffered the pain, so please you ordinary people pay more'." The government faces major challenges: forging a new energy policy while ending the Fukushima radiation crisis, rebuilding the tsunami-devastated northeast and funding social welfare in an ageing society. On Friday Noda named his cabinet. Their first task will be to oversee a budget for the biggest rebuilding project since World War Two. Noda is considered a safe pair of hands after his predecessor's sometimes erratic and divisive rule. Lily Grimes, Reuters

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Japanese PM names cabinet

Friday, September 02, 2011 - 02:01