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Hatoyama Cabinet E-mail Magazine No. 13 (January 8, 2010)

Yukio Hatoyama's "Yu-Ai" -- Message from the Prime Minister
(Provisional Translation)

Prime Minister HatoyamaProfile Japanese

Minister of Finance Hirohisa Fujii has offered his resignation citing ill health and I have accepted his resignation. It is truly unfortunate as I had hoped that he would nurture his child, the fiscal 2010 budget, which he fathered. I wish from my heart that he will take care of himself to return to health as soon as possible and help us again in various ways.

I have just asked Deputy Prime Minister Naoto Kan to succeed him as Minister of Finance.

The entire Cabinet will put forth all its efforts into implementing the fiscal 2010 budget and tax system reforms in the most expeditious manner possible.


"A crucial year"

Happy New Year to all readers of the e-mail magazine.

As we greet the new year, I would like to convey to you my resolutions and determination for this year.

The people's strong desire to change politics led to the change of government last year, allowing us to finally come to the starting line of a politics in which you, the people, will play the main roles.

It has only been a short period, just over 100 days, since the launch of the new government and there may be many ways in which we are still lacking. However, I am sure that you already feel that politics is changing through our actions such as abolishing permanent vice ministers' meetings, a tradition symbolic of the bureaucrat-led politics that had continued since the Meiji era, and eliminating waste in the government's budget with the review of government programs, which was conducted openly.

Now, we are at the real starting line. I have renewed my resolve that as Prime Minister, I will return to my roots to create a new kind of politics together with the people, a politics for the people. This year will be the crucial year for this.

At the end of last year, we formulated the first principal budget of the Hatoyama Cabinet, the fiscal 2010 budget, naming it "a budget to protect people's daily lives." We did our utmost to secure resources for protecting human life, such as for the child allowance and free education at public high schools, as well as employment, medical care and the environment.

We also made a Cabinet decision on the framework for a new growth strategy. Up until now, policies have leaned toward companies (the supply side). With the new growth strategy, however, we will change this mindset to one that centers on the daily lives of the people (the demand side), to shift toward an economy for people.

We will break from measures relying on public projects and public finance, and policies based on market fundamentalism. Instead, we will face the issues of the people's daily lives head-on and resolve them, thereby creating new demand and employment.

The most important thing in doing so is to take advantage of Japan's strengths.

First, we must advance technological innovation in the field of environmental energy (green innovation) by utilizing Japan's technology that we boast about to the world, with the aim to be the number one environmental and energy technology power. Our goal is to expand the environment-related market by over 50 trillion yen and create jobs for 1.4 million people by 2020.

We will take the advance of the aging of society not as a risk, but rather an opportunity to bring about a society of good health and longevity. Through innovation in the field of medicine and nursing care (life innovation), we will make medical, nursing care, and health-related industries into growth industries, creating a 45 trillion yen market and jobs for 2.8 million people.

We will build up the foundation of Japan's future by implementing these policies that care for people, and changing Japan's politics. This will indeed be a year in which politics will be tested on its power to deliver.

Another major challenge is to make politics closer to the people. I will firmly convey the Cabinet's policies and the philosophies behind them in this e-mail magazine as I have in the past year. In addition, I have started using Twitter and my blog this year as means to communicate my daily activities and thoughts. Some of you may already know about these, but I would be happy if you would read them as well.

Politics does not belong to specific politicians. The people's voices and opinions are the guiding principles of politics. We will continue to actively provide information, even more so than before, and for your part, I hope you will use every opportunity to voice your opinions and be the driving force to change politics.

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General Editor: Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama
Chief Editor: Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Yorihisa Matsuno
Publication: Cabinet Public Relations Office
1-6-1 Nagata-cho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 100-8968, Japan

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