The government will establish an administrative reform panel consisting largely of renowned business leaders who will tackle such issues as the public servant wage system, sales of government-owned assets and regulations on farming and medicine.
The 10-member panel will be modeled after the Second Ad Hoc Commission on Administration Reform, commonly known as the "Doko Rincho." Led by its chairman, Toshio Doko, the commission promoted the regional partition and privatization of the former Japanese National Railways in the 1980s.
The new panel will draw on private-sector wisdom to reform the public servant system and regulatory systems. It is expected to convene on May 7 and remain in existence for about two years.
"We want to create a modern-day answer to the Doko Rincho commission to discuss matters," said Deputy Prime Minister Katsuya Okada, who will head the panel.
The intention is to demonstrate to the public that the government is willing to heed private-sector advice on cutting waste and to gain their understanding for the planned hikes in the consumption tax rate.
The private-sector members will include: Kyocera Corp. Chairman Emeritus Kazuo Inamori, who helped rehabilitate Japan Airlines Co.; Central Japan Railway Co. Chairman Yoshiyuki Kasai; Kikkoman Corp. Honorary CEO Yuzaburo Mogi; Sumitomo Corp. Chairman Motoyuki Oka; Yoshihiro Katayama, a Keio University professor and former internal affairs and communications minister; and Rengo (Japanese Trade Union Confederation) President Nobuaki Koga.
The ruling Democratic Party of Japan included the creation of a "council on administrative structure reform" in a bill it submitted to the current Diet session, but there are no immediate prospects that the bill will be passed.
The DPJ decided to set up a panel with similar functions and turn it into a law-backed council when the bill is passed.
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