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2014年6月 1日 (日)

内閣人事局発足 官僚機構を活性化できるか

The Yomiuri Shimbun 7:20 pm, May 31, 2014
Can new government office revitalize bureaucratic machine?
内閣人事局発足 官僚機構を活性化できるか

A newly established government office will be tested as to whether it can reinvigorate the bureaucratic system through the strategic handling of personnel matters to help the government carry out important policies.

The Cabinet Bureau of Personnel Affairs has been established to unify the management of the appointment of senior central government officials. Created in line with the law on reform of the national civil service system that was enacted in April, the bureau was inaugurated Friday with a staff of about 170, comprising mainly officials temporarily assigned from the Internal Affairs and Communications Ministry.

It was standard practice in the past for government ministries and agencies to compile individual appointment plans for their high-ranking posts, from the director general of each bureau on up. Those plans were then approved by the Prime Minister’s Office.

From now on, however, the Cabinet Bureau of Personnel Affairs will draw up a list of candidates for about 600 senior positions, including division chief and deputy vice minister levels. Relevant cabinet ministers will discuss the list with the prime minister and chief cabinet secretary to make the final decisions.

Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato will double as the inaugural head of the new bureau, a move believed to be aimed at strengthening the government’s leadership in handling personnel matters for bureaucrats.

It is imperative for the government to have the right people in the right positions by making fair judgments based on ability and merit while eliminating personal favoritism.

The touchstone of the new system will be bureaucratic appointments scheduled for this summer.

It is imperative to rejuvenate personnel exchanges between government ministries and agencies, rectify the vertically segmented administrative system and actively tap talented persons, thereby changing bureaucratic ways of thinking.

Care must be taken to enhance the government’s ability to implement policy, by gathering competent bureaucrats from beyond the barriers of government offices in departments in charge of important policies.

Female appointments

The appointment of women bu-reaucrats is another focal point.

Placing great importance on women’s potential, the Abe Cabinet has been installing female bureaucrats in senior positions in government offices since last year. A senior female bureaucrat of the Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry has also been appointed to a key post in the Cabinet Bureau of Personnel Affairs.

The government plans to put forth a policy of raising the percentage of female bureaucrats in key government posts from the current 3 percent to 30 percent by 2020. To achieve this, it is indispensable to provide an environment in which work and child-rearing are compatible. We hope Tomomi Inada, state minister in charge of the civil service system, will promote reform from a woman’s perspective.

The Cabinet Bureau of Personnel Affairs will work out a government program to foster career-track young bureaucrats as candidates for key posts in the future. The bureau will also take charge of part of the conventional functions of the National Personnel Authority, such as appointments, holding recruitment exams and clerical work for seminars.

Senior central government officials must prioritize national interests over the interests of their own offices while quickly coping with changes in domestic and international affairs. Government personnel must be nurtured from a medium- to long-term perspective.

Through an ordinance, the government has established a system to hear the views of a third party about appointing members of the private sector when the Cabinet Bureau of Personnel Affairs draws up candidate lists for high-ranking posts. This is probably an appropriate step to ensure fairness in deciding on appointments.

The authority to decide the quota of government officials at each rank of salary has been transferred from the National Personnel Authority to the newly established bureau. However, the National Personnel Authority is allowed to continue a certain level of involvement. Adjustments must be made to prevent dual administration.

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun, May 31, 2014)


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« 拉致再調査 北朝鮮は誠実に約束を果たせ | トップページ | 維新の会分裂 野党再編は政策本位で進めよ »