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  5. The Democratic Party’s Administrative and Fiscal Reform: What Resulted from the Budget Screening and the Review of Government Programs?

2013 Vol.1
The Democratic Party’s Administrative and Fiscal Reform: What Resulted from the Budget Screening and the Review of Government Programs?

2013/01/01

The details of the policies listed in the Democratic Party’s manifesto for the 2009 lower-house election mention, above all, measures to eliminate wasteful spending. The change in administration in 2009 came about as many voters demanded reexamination of the systems and policies that had become inflexible under the prolonged Liberal Democratic administration. Budget screening was put forth by the Democratic Party immediately after the change in administration as a tool for administrative and fiscal reform. Budget screening was meant to reexamine programs from external viewpoints with an emphasis on openness and was conducted widely among local governments. Under the Democratic administration, budget screening was conducted five times in total, and the first in November 2009 attracted great attention. The review of government programs, dubbed “screening of all national programs,”was introduced at government agencies, with the idea of budget screening being incorporated. It was decided that the review would be conducted during the formation of each year’s budget, and it was implemented for three years including a trial. What was at the core of the budget screening and the review of government programs, which were heavily reported by the media? This paper discusses their results and issues. Now that a new Liberal Democratic administration has started, this paper proposes the viewpoints needed for further administrative and fiscal reform, based on the efforts made by the Democratic Party.

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