« 原発住民投票 再稼働の判断にはなじまない | トップページ | 参院1票の格差 抜本改革へ最高裁の強い警告 »

2012年10月20日 (土)

消費税と新聞 軽減税率の議論を再開したい

The Yomiuri Shimbun (Oct. 19, 2012)
Resume discussions on applying lower tax rate to newspapers
消費税と新聞 軽減税率の議論を再開したい(10月18日付・読売社説)

Newspapers are an important foundation of democracy and the culture of the printed word. When the consumption tax rate is increased, we think a reduced tax rate system should be introduced--and newspapers should be subject to this lower rate.
 新聞は民主主義と活字文化を支える重要な基盤だ。消費税率引き上げでは、新聞に対する税率を低く抑える軽減税率を導入すべきである。

The Japan Newspaper Publishers & Editors Association held its annual convention in Aomori this week. A resolution adopted at the event called for a reduced tax rate to be applied to newspapers because "imposing more taxes on knowledge--including newspapers--would undermine the maintenance and development of democracy."
 日本新聞協会が青森市で開いた今年の新聞大会は、「新聞を含む知識への課税強化は民主主義の維持・発展を損なう。新聞には軽減税率を適用するよう強く求める」とする決議を採択した。

The newspaper industry delivered a strong message after bills on integrated social security and tax system reform--of which increasing the consumption tax rate was a central pillar--were passed by the Diet in August.
 消費増税を柱とする社会保障・税一体改革関連法が8月に成立したことを受け、新聞業界として強いメッセージを打ち出した。

During a discussion session at the convention, officials from national newspapers said a reduced tax rate should be applied to newspapers to maintain these publications, which are a basic lifeline for democracy and culture.
 討論会では、全国紙から「民主主義、文化の最低のライフラインを守るためには、軽減税率の導入が必要だ」との訴えがあった。

Representatives of some local newspapers also spoke of the high educational effect newspapers can provide, while others described the nation's high proportion of households that subscribe to newspapers as a "social asset."
 地方紙からも「新聞の教育効果は高い」、「日本の高い新聞普及率は社会の財産だ」などといった意見が相次いだ。

===

Look at European examples

Newspapers, which can be picked up easily and cheaply in every corner of the nation, are de facto public property and part of the social infrastructure. We believe many readers recognize that newspapers are an important daily necessity on a par with rice and other food items.
 新聞は、全国で誰もが安く手に入れて活用できる特色があり、公共財的な社会インフラだ。コメなどの食料品と同じような必需品として、新聞の重要性を認める読者は少なくないのではないか。

If newspapers shut down due to worsening financial conditions following the tax hike, this nation would be stripped of some of its diversity of speech and opinions. There are fears such a situation would impair the ability of newspapers to be a watchdog ensuring government accountability, and citizens' interest in politics would fade. Eventually, the vitality of local communities could decline.
 消費増税で経営が悪化した新聞社が発行をやめる事態になれば、言論の多様性は失われていく。行政への監視機能は弱まり、住民の政治への関心も薄まって、地域社会の活力低下が懸念される。

We should learn from European countries, which cherish the public nature of newspapers and their role in protecting the culture of the printed word.
 新聞の公益性や活字文化を守る役割を重視し、軽減税率を採用している欧州を参考にしたい。

The rates of value-added taxes in Europe, which are equivalent to Japan's consumption tax, are about 20 percent. However, much lower tax rates are applied to newspapers--just 2.1 percent in France, 4 percent in Spain and 7 percent in Germany. Belgium, Britain and Norway even impose no tax on such publications.
 欧州各国では、日本の消費税に当たる付加価値税の税率は20%前後だが、新聞に適用される税率は、フランス2・1%、スペイン4%、ドイツ7%と軒並み低い。イギリス、ベルギー、ノルウェーのように0%の国もある。

Under the enacted laws on integrated reform, the consumption tax rate will increase to 8 percent in April 2014 from the current 5 percent, and rise further to 10 percent in October the following year. They also stipulate that "comprehensive examination from various points of view" will be given to the possible introduction of a reduced tax system.
 一体改革法は、2014年4月に消費税率を現行の5%から8%、15年10月に10%に上げるとともに、軽減税率については、「様々な角度から総合的に検討する」と明記している。

===

No time to waste

Nevertheless, it can be called problematic that the government has not started full-fledged discussions on this issue more than two months after the legislation was enacted.
 にもかかわらず、法律の成立から2か月以上が経過しても、政府が議論を本格化させていないのは問題と言える。

Earlier this week, Yoshihisa Inoue, secretary general at New Komeito, submitted a petition signed by about 6 million people calling for the introduction of a reduced tax system to Finance Minister Koriki Jojima. Inoue urged that this system be introduced when the consumption tax rate is increased to 8 percent.
 公明党の井上幹事長が、軽減税率導入を求める約600万人の署名を城島財務相に提出し、税率8%時からの実施を要請した。

The submission should be used to get the wheels turning on the resumption of discussions on the issue.
これを機に議論を再開すべきだ。

Liberal Democratic Party President Shinzo Abe and Secretary General Shigeru Ishiba included the introduction of a reduced tax system among their pledges for the recent party presidential election in which they both ran.
 自民党も安倍総裁、石破幹事長が総裁選公約で、ともに軽減税率導入を訴えていた。

The process of introducing a reduced tax system will involve several stages, such as determining what items should be subject to it. The government should waste no time in beefing up coordination with the LDP and Komeito.
 軽減税率の導入には、対象品目を絞り込む作業などが不可欠だ。政府は時間を浪費せず、自公両党との調整を急ぐ必要がある。

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, Oct. 18, 2012)
(2012年10月18日01時20分  読売新聞)

|

« 原発住民投票 再稼働の判断にはなじまない | トップページ | 参院1票の格差 抜本改革へ最高裁の強い警告 »

01-英字新聞(読売)」カテゴリの記事

コメント

コメントを書く



(ウェブ上には掲載しません)




« 原発住民投票 再稼働の判断にはなじまない | トップページ | 参院1票の格差 抜本改革へ最高裁の強い警告 »