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Press translations [Japan]. Economic Series 0194, 1946-01-23.
Supreme Commander for The Allied Powers. Allied Translator and Interpreter Section.

translation-number: economic-0892

call-number: DS801 .S81

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No. 892 Date: 23 Jan 46


ITEM 1 Control on Fresh Foods Explained by Authorities - Tokyo Shimbun - 21 January 1946. Translator: R. Shibata.
As a result of the removal of controls on fresh foods, inflation has been aggravated by higher prices, although a good quantity of fruits, vegetables, fish, shells, and others foods have appeared on the market. Taking into consideration this serious situation, the Government intends to revive the old control system. What will become of fresh foods when they are brought again under price controls?
With regard to this point, a reporter had the following conversation with Mr. SHIBANO, Chief of the Food Bureau (SHOKUHIN KYOKU) of the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry:
Question: "Does the Government intend to revive the old control system?"
Answer: "We are considering a control which has elasticity in some degree. What the Government aims at is to legalize the price, determined through necessity by prefectural governors, and to invest them with authority to dispatch orders of shipment to producers near the city on a planned basis."
Question: "What will become of the present black market?"
Answer: "We are not considering the prohibition of black markets, but intend to make maximum use of the organization of black marketers in both collection and distribution, after making them form a union in each district. At first, we shall demand the registration of street peddlers, etc. Those who do not register will be forbidden to do business. We intend to let them do business at reasonable prices so that the black market will not promote inflation."
Question: "What will be the relation between black markets and ordinary household distribution?"
Answer: "To be brief, we shall have two markets, a black market and ordinary distribution channels from the places of production to the Central Market (CHUO SHIJO) to the neighborhood group association and then to each household. Hitherto, prices of fresh foods have had a tendency to rise in the later stages of distribution. We intend to appoint distribution inspectors in the six large cities in order to supervise strictly the quantity and prices. Not only officials but also civilians, such as the chief of the Neighborhood Group Association (CHOKAICHO), will be appointed as inspectors."
Question: "By this step can we expect, in the future, a considerable supply of vegetables at a cheap price?"

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ECONOMIC SERIES: 194 (Continued)
ITEM 1 (Continued)
Answer: "As it is winter now, we cannot say that an abundant supply will result from these measures. However, we are making efforts to lower prices to a level at least within the reach of salaried men."
ITEM 2 Steamship Companies to Enter the Fishery Circle - Asahi Shimbun - 21 January 1946. Translator: Ren Shibata.
Full Translation:
Japanese steamship companies are presently facing a serious crisis, as almost all of the ships that made up a large merchant marine have been lost during the war. The companies cannot avert ruin if things remain as they are. Taking advantage of huge capital and abundant supplies, some progressive shipping companies are considering entry into the fishing industry as a measure to meet the present difficult situation. The first to start were the NIPPON YUSEN KAISHA line and the GOYO Steamship Company (GOYO SHOSEN KAISHA). The GOYO Steamship Company has decided to establish a fishery company with a capital of 5,000,000 yen paid in full.
Having already been given permission by Allied Headquarters and the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, the TAIYO Marine Products Company (TAIYO SUISAN KAISHA) was established. It was decided to establish fishing headquarters at the port of TANABE in the KISHU District and at the port of MISAKI on the MIURA Peninsula. The Company has ordered five fishing vessels of the 135-ton type from the KAWASAKI Shipbuilding Company (KAWASAKI ZOSEN), and has purchased five second-hand vessels. It will handle catches of tunny and bonito. Although the fishing area allowed by SCAP is limited for the present to the sea between TANEGASHIMA in KYUSHU and near the OGASAWARA Islands, they are confident of its being expended further in the future.
Meanwhile, the NIPPON YUSEN KAISHA Line is planning to go into the fishing industry with the idea of keeping many skilled sail[illegible]. The Company is considered promising as a fishing industry since they have four wooden vessel-building companies in KISHU, eastern KYUSHU, UNZEN, and KAGOSHIMA Districts.
ITEM 3 Labor Difficulties in Civilian Industries Converted from Munitions Industries Nippon Sangyo Keizai - 21 January 1946. Translator: H. Sato.
The conversion of munitions industries into civilian industries is rather tardy in its progress, and one of the outstanding reasons for this lies in the difficulties of recruiting workers. Going on the investigation made by the Local Management Section of Commerce and Industry (CHIHO SHOKO SHORIBU), the following brief report is made regarding employment in those converted civilian industries:
At the end of the war there were industries numbering 11,700 and employees roughly estimated at 2,000,000. Those who received Government permission to change over to civilian industries or were under application numbered 325 on 20 October and 497 on 15 December.
At the end of December, 48 per cent of the office employees and 69 per cent of the laborers were dismissed.
With the gradual recovery from the postwar collapse, enthusiasm for industries of a lasting nature is appearing. Generally, however, every factory is having labor troubles. At the OMORI factory of the NIPPON Special Steel Company (NIPPON T0KUSHUKO), work is not going on smoothly on account of the low rate of attendance of the laborers. There are some, however, which have a good attendance rate, such as

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ECONOMIC SERIES: 194 (Continued)

ITEM 3 (Continued)

those with 95 per cent at the YUASA Storage Battery Company (YUASA CHIKUDENCHI) in ODAWARA; 82 per cent at MEIDENSHA; 80 per cent at the TOKYO Meter Company (TOKYO KEIKI); and 75 per cent, at the TSURUMI Iron Works of the NIPPON Steel Pipe Company (NIPPON KOKAN).
Employment of laborers in factories is at a rather low level because, apart from the lack of capacity of the employment agencies, stress is laid for the present on the encouragement of labor for the mines, and employment by the occupation forces presents better conditions. During the two months after the end of the war, in CKIBAI-Ken vacancies totalled 4,000; situations wanted, 1,929; employment obtained, 792; in GUMMA-Ken vacancies numbered 9,225; situations wanted, 8,896; employment obtained, 3,157.

According to the recent investigation made at the four major industries in the TOKYO-YOKOHAMA districts, including the NIPPON Steel Pipe Company, among those who had been dismissed by these industries 37 per cent became farmers, 21 per cent got back to their former situations, 16 per cent got employment in other industries, 13 per cent are still unemployed, and 13 per cent unknown.
ITEM 4 Opinions of the Political Parties in Regard to the Current Economic Problems - Yomiuri-Hochi Shimbun - 21 January 1946. Translator: Y. Kurata.
With the coming general elections, the political parties, including Social Democrats, Communists, Progressives, and Liberals, are now mapping cut their plans on current economic problems.
(A) Social Democrat Party:
On the farm land problems, the Party strictly opposes the Government steps towards farm land reform, saying that such steps wall serve only to protect the landowners. In asserting that the need of the moment is for the Government to take responsibility for making necessary fertilizers available for the farmers as soon as possible, it gave its plans for putting State management of fertilizer and farming tools production into effect as soon as possible by establishing a special financial institution for the farmers. As to the delivery of farm products, it will see to it that the Agricultural Association takes the responsibility for its smooth operation.
Concerning problems on inflation, it proposes the following concrete measures: (1) the confiscation of war profits by the war profit tax; (2) the cancellation of all Government obligations to war industries; (3) the enforcement of heavy property and war profit taxes; (4) the earmarking of the above-mentioned tax revenues for the funds for complete employment and stabilization of the civilian cost of living; (5) the revision of the exemption limit of 20,000 yen and the raising of the maximum rate of taxation from 70 to 30 per cent.
It puts forward the following measures to combat unemployment; (1) to give the unemployed jobs by reducing the present working hours; (2) to plan nation-wide war damage rehabilitation works and to employ jobless workers in accordance with their capabilities, there by guaranteeing their livelihood; (3) to introduce the unemployment insurance system; (4) to establish a Ministry of Labor to replace the Ministry of Welfare.
(B) The Communist Party:
On the food problem, the Communists urge that the fundamental solution of this problem is possible only through independent organizations,
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ECONOMIC SERIES: 194 (Continued)
ITEM 4 (Continued)
such as labor unions, agricultural associations, and the Food Management Commission. They also regard the workers' management of production essential for the production of the necessary food for the reestablishment of the civilian standards of life.
Fundamental policies of the Party are the following: (1) to cancel all Government compensations to the munition industries; (2) to carry out the outright confiscation of wartime profits; (3) to enforce the fair taxation of properties.
However, the party insists that these policies will be put into effect only by the appearance of a powerful and more democratic republican Government, not by the present quasi-militaristic and quasi-feudalistic Government.
(C) The Progressive Party:
Regarding the food problem, its attention is being focussed on the accomplishment of the delivery of staple foods. For this purpose, it proposes the immediate abolition of bureaucratic control policies in the delivery systems. As for unemployment, it urges a new social policy, using the funds accrued from the new taxes. On the inflation problem, it opines that either individuals or officials should curtail their consumption to prevent vicious inflation. On the property tax, it stresses the fact that the Government revenues from this tax should be earmarked for the funds to put into effect food and unemployment policies.
(D) The Liberal Party:
Its policy against the current vicious inflation is (1) to freeze all Government compensation to the munitions industries; (2) to postpone the payment of war bonds and to reduce the interest on them; (3) to withdraw floating currencies by selling Government properties and enterprises; (4) to revise drastically the present pension system; (5) to carry out drastic cuts in administrative expenses by discharging Government officials.
On the food problem, it urges the following steps: (l) the reduction of the quota of rice and wheat to be sold to the Government; (2) the increase of the price of farm products by a large amount; (3) the distribution of necessary commodities to the farmers; (4) the recognition of free marketing of the rice exceeding the quota; (5) the encouragement of every effort for food import.
Its measures to counter unemployment are (1) public works; (2) introduction of social and unemployment insurance; (3) improvement in labor conditions.
As may be clearly understood from the above opinions of major political parties, it is not too much to say that they are now making great efforts to carry out the reconstruction of Japanese economy.
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HomePress translations [Japan]. Economic Series 0194, 1946-01-23.
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