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Japan set to nominate BoJ deputy as new governor PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 09 April 2008

Japan is set to propose a third nominee for central bank chief, this time putting up Bank of Japan deputy Masaaki Shirakawa, in a bid to end a political feud over the vacant post, reports AFP.

The government, which saw its first two choices to head the bank shot down by the opposition, is now scrambling to fill the job in time for Friday’s meeting of finance chiefs from the Group of Seven (G7) major economies.

The government plans to submit the new nominee Monday afternoon for a vote in parliament on Wednesday, Jiji Press and other media reported. Japan’s opposition leader on Sunday hinted that his party may accept Shirakawa to take over the top spot, which has been vacant for more than two weeks after the political deadlock.

Local media have reported that Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda plans to endorse Shirakawa for the job—and the main opposition Democratic Party leader Ichiro Ozawa suggested that was an acceptable choice.

“We don’t see an obstacle,” Ozawa said on Fuji TV on Sunday. But he suggested that a possible nominee to be the next deputy, Hiroshi Watanabe, would not be approved by his party. The opposition rejected the first two nominees, arguing that they were too entrenched in the finance ministry to preserve the independence of the central bank, which has repeatedly come under pressure to keep interest rates low.

The vacancy at the top of the BoJ has come while the world’s central banks are working to contain the fallout of the global credit crunch and the worsening world economy.

Amid the feud over the top post, the latest poll issued Monday showed Fukuda’s public support fell further to 24 percent Approval of Fukuda’s cabinet has fallen 6 percentage points from the previous survey last month to 24 percent, a new low for Fukuda, the poll by the Mainichi Shimbun newspaper said. The cabinet’s disapproval rating rose 6 points to 57 percent, said the survey which was conducted Saturday and Sunday of 1,061 voters.

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