Japan

Recovery continues
Economics Department

Click on the globe for Key Economic Forecast and Indicators

The economic expansion remains on track, though at a more moderate pace as a result of a slowdown in export growth. The resilience of domestic demand, reflecting the increased profitability of the corporate sector and employment gains, should help sustain growth at an annual rate of around 2.25% through 2005 and 2006.
The expansion, the strongest since the 1980s, is expected to bring an end to deflation, as measured by the consumer price index, in the course of 2005.The Bank of Japan’s policy of quantitative easing and zero interest rates should continue until inflation is sufficiently high to make the risk of renewed deflation negligible. A detailed and credible consolidation plan to achieve the government’s goal of a primary budget surplus by the early 2010s is necessary for confidence in fiscal sustainability. Further progress in reforming the banking sector is important to bolster the recovery and should be accompanied by an acceleration of a broad structural reform programme to increase productivity.
Population (000s), 2003127 619
Area (000 sq km)378
CurrencyYen
GDP (Billion USD), 20034 300.9
Life expectancy at birth (Women, Men), 2002 85.2, 78.3
Total labour force (000s), 200366 660
Government typeConstitutional Monarchy
Indicators% change unless otherwise indicated
200420052006
GDP growth4.02.12.3
Household savings ratio5.15.05.0
Consumer price index-0.10.10.6
Short-term interest rate (%)0.00.00.4
Unemployment rate (%)4.84.54.2
General government financial balance (% GDP)-6.5-6.4-6.3
Current account balance (% GDP)3.53.53.7
Source: OECD© OECD Observer, No. 245, November 2004


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