DAVOS: Japan’s Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) NISHIMURA Yasutoshi said on Wednesday that Japan currently has 27 potential nuclear reactors that could “reduce energy imports” by one million ton.
Speaking at the World Economic Forum at Davos, Nishimura explained that there are currently 10 nuclear reactors on operation in Japan, seven have permission to operate and 10 more are currently under examination for safety.
Nishimura said that renewable energy should be introduced as much as possible. “By activating one reactor, we can reduce the import of energy by one million ton.”
The METI Minister also touched on various topics ranging from the upcoming G7 summit in Hiroshima, inflation rates in Japan and the importance of global free trade.
“Our message for the G7 is protecting the rule of law and democracy,” Nishimura said. “Free and fair trade is important to be promoted. We have to also keep in mind the global south, which is suffering from climate change, we have to promote free trade.”
In terms of the economy, the minister told audience at Davos that in order to get out of deflation, private sectors must increase wages five percent or over.
“Uniqlo’s unprecedented increase in wages is very much appreciated, but even this is very small in comparison to what the West is doing,” he said. “Demand-pulled inflation is what we need, rather than a cost-led one.”
CEO of Suntory Holdings Limited Tak Niinami also participated in the session, providing a perspective on Japan’s trade with China.
“The reality is that trade transaction between Japan and China is increasing,” Niinami said. “We cannot decouple from China, aside from sensitive items.”
The CEO said economic prosperity in the region will lead to stability, so Japan must maintain its trade relationship with China.
Niinami added that Japan also needs to “shake hands with South Korea.”
“It is a great statement that South Korea is invited to the G7 summit,” he said, adding that Japan’s Prime Minister KISHIDA Fumio is working closely with the country.
The session titled ‘Japan’s Path to Economic Revival’ had other participants including Australian former politician Julie Bishop and Chairperson of Bain Capital Stephen Pagliuca.