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Koizumi Cabinet E-mail Magazine No. 202 (September 15, 2005)

[Lion Heart -- Message from Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi]
(Provisional Translation)

Prime Minister Junichiro KoizumiProfile Japanese

Turning postal privatization into reality with your help and support

Junichiro Koizumi here.

In the House of Representatives election on September 11, the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) secured 296 seats. Combining this figure with the seats gained by the New Komeito Party gives the ruling parties a total of 327. This comfortably exceeded our goal to win a majority of seats in the House of Representatives.

I believe that the fact that we were able to secure as many seats as we did in this general election reflects the people's strong conviction that the "privatization of the postal services is necessary" and "structural reform must be advanced." I am truly grateful for your clear and powerful support.

Why is it that everyone agrees that we must "reduce the number of civil servants," "boldly push forward the administrative and fiscal reforms" and "leave to the private sector what it can do," but we cannot privatize the three postal services? Why must the three postal services be operated by 380,000 or so civil servants?

The problem of the privatization of the postal services is a typical example of "agreeing to the general principle but disagreeing about the details." The Diet concluded that the "privatization of the postal services is unnecessary" last month. Still, I decided to dissolve the House of Representatives because I wanted to ask the people directly about whether or not they thought it was unnecessary to privatize the postal services.

Thanks to all the people who said that the "privatization of the postal services is necessary" in last week's general election, we will finally be able to go into the details of the reform and turn the privatization of the postal services into reality.

I am determined to see to it that your support is translated into a motivating force for the Koizumi Cabinet in enacting the bill related to the privatization of the postal services at the earliest possible date. We are pursuing the privatization of the postal services with the help and support of the people of this country.

The privatization of the postal services lies at the very "heart of the reforms." Achieving postal privatization will lead to administrative and financial reforms to create a simple yet efficient government, and economic reforms to revitalize the economy. It will also prompt reform of the political structure and encourage emphasis on the national interest, rather than narrow, individual interests. Realizing the privatization of the postal services, we will not stop reforms, on the contrary, we will pick up the pace of structural reform in all areas of society.

Typhoon No. 14, which brought record-breaking torrential rains to the Kyushu and Shikoku regions last week, caused disastrous landslides and extensive damage in these regions. Hurricane Katrina wreaked havoc in the United States, leaving 80 percent of the city of New Orleans submerged under the floodwaters. The search for victims continues even now in the wake of this unprecedented, catastrophic disaster.

There is a saying that "disaster strikes when least expected." We will advance disaster prevention measures based on the assumption that disaster can hit at any time, and build Japan into a country that can promptly deal with disasters.

I will leave for New York today to attend the United Nations (UN) General Assembly. Although the e-mail magazine was on break for a period, it is now back in business, and I heartily look forward to engaging in dialogue with the readers once again.

* The title of this column "Lion Heart" is a reference to the Prime Minister's lion-like hairstyle and his unbending determination to advance structural reform.

[What's up around the Prime Minister]

- Science and Technology in Society Forum (STS Forum) (September 11, 2005)
Prime Minister Koizumi addressed, "Environmental protection and economic development are mutually achievable and sustainable. It is science and technology that hold the key to achieving the dual goals."

- Japan-Thailand Summit Meeting (September 1, 2005)
Prime Minister Koizumi held a summit meeting with Mr. Thaksin Shinawatra, the Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Thailand.

- Disaster Prevention Day Drills (September 1, 2005)
Prime Minister Koizumi stated, "Not only public institutions but also each and every one of us must think about and manifest in our daily lives preparedness for disaster prevention."

- Japan-Central America Summit Meeting (August 18, 2005)
Prime Minister Koizumi held a meeting with the presidents and vice presidents of the seven Central American countries.

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General Editor: Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi
Chief Editor: Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Seiken Sugiura
Publication: Cabinet Public Relations Office
1-6-1 Nagata-cho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 100-8968, Japan

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