Total budget requests from Japan’s government agencies are set to top 100 trillion yen for the seventh straight year, boosted by costs related to the battle against the coronavirus COVID-19 outbreak.
The health ministry’s budget request for fiscal 2021 will total a record 32,989.5 billion yen, reflecting heavy social security expenses.
The requested amount, however, do not take into account many of the planned measures to combat COVID-19, such as those to strengthen the virus testing regime and the medical system, because their costs have not been specified yet.
These measures could increase the overall cost to several trillion yen.
The land ministry will seek funds for assistance to the transport service and tourism industries without specifying the amounts, while the education ministry has yet to decide how much it will request for plans to reduce the number of pupils and students per class.
The Finance Ministry will request 25,493.4 billion yen in debt-servicing costs, a 2,141.9 billion yen increase from the previous year’s initial budget, because outstanding bonds are set to increase further.