Japan to establish new economic security office

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida is expected to announce the establishment of a new economic security office today. As part

Japan will establish a new economic security office today

The Economic Security minister of Japan Takayuki Kobayashi and PM Kishida hand a sign denoting the establishment of the economic security office – Photo: POOL/Via Kyodo

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida is expected to announce the establishment of a new economic security office today.

As part of a meeting of the Council on Economic and Fiscal Policy, Kishida is expected to present a draft of economic and fiscal policy reforms, following the recent introduction of a new law on economic security. As part of the reforms, the government will establish an economic security office, which will coordinate the implementation of the reforms across government ministries and agencies dealing with the economy and internal affairs.

The economic security law is widely seen as a response to Chinese economic threats and Russian fossil fuel dependency. The broad reforms aim to protect key patents, strengthen strategic supply chains, secure fossil fuel imports and increase resilience against foreign cyber-attacks. To achieve this, the government will take a more active role in protecting domestic industries it deems as vital to national security.

Critics have noted that the law may give too much indiscriminate power to the government to intervene in the private sector while lacking details of implementation. Today’s draft of the reform is expected to clarify some of the as yet unspecified measures. If measures taken were to include restricting Japanese exports of key raw materials to China, as happened to South Korea in 2019, Beijing will likely retaliate, for example by sanctioning Japanese businesses.

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