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Press translations [Japan]. Economic Series 0325, 1946-02-18.
Supreme Commander for The Allied Powers. Allied Translator and Interpreter Section.

translation-number: economic-1409

call-number: DS801 .S81

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No. 1409 Date: 18 Feb 46


ITEM 1 Opinions on the Emergency Measure - Mainichi Shimbun - 17 February 1946. Translator: S. Kawasaki.
Full Translation:
The Progressive Party:
The Progressive Party held an important General Affairs Committee Meeting at 1300 on 16 February and expressed the attitude of the Party by making a public statement. This time, the Government has decided to carry out an emergency measure to counter the inflation which is now facing JAPAN. The Party hopes that the Government will pay careful attention, make thorough preparations, and supervise the carrying out of its measures.
The stability of national living must not be disturbed by any means be cause of emergency measures. For this purpose, barter, which is forecast, especially the barter of staple foods, etc., should be strictly prohibited. The impartial distribution of staple food should be secured; and at the same time, a system of prices should be established. Suitable fixed prices must be published as soon as possible. Purchasing power must be controlled by freezing credit to prevent its misuse on the black market. The cost of railway freight should be reviewed in light of the new scale of prices.
The prevention of inflation cannot be effected only by the manipulation of the currency. It can better be done by increasing the production of materials. Therefore, concerning the funds which are needed to develop postwar industry, red tape must be abolished. Methods to improve the circulation of capital must be adopted and an increase in the amount of capital must be secured.
The Farmers' Union:
The JAPAN Farmers' Union revealed a different opinion and made a public statement on 16 February: "We have previously shown the inadequacy of Government measures for the distribution of rice. The demand of producer - farmers is for a truly democratic method of distribution. We have often demanded that compulsory measures be avoided. Nevertheless, this time, the Government has ignored the demands of the farmers, and has issued compulsory orders for the supply of rice. Such an action can be said to reveal its reactionary character and the bureaucratic, despotic methods with which the Government intends to cover the defects of its policy, and to impute the responsibility to the producer-farmers. Because of this, the Government must withdraw the exercise of its authority."
Concerning the emergency measure, Mr. NODA, Tetsuzo, President of the

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ECONOMIC SERIES: 325 (Continued)
ITEM 1 (Continued)
SUMITOMO Bank, spoke as follows: "As the effect of this measure will be very important it must be carried out carefully. First, the measure means that distribution of money will be carried out. The equal distribution of currency as in the case of an equal distribution of cigarettes or sugar cannot always be said to be fair. It is doubtful whether those who live in the country should receive as much as those who live in the towns and cities. Second, the present inflation cannot be prevented only by financial circles. I think that a scale of prices and materials is rather important. Accordingly, it is absolutely necessary that the circulation of materials be promoted, whence a sharp fall in prices would result. Third, business funds must be produced, but their use by individuals must be prevented, Loans, or the payment of deposits, should be encouraged. Loans by big companies, or the payment of deposits must be made with care, otherwise they are in danger of being used for individual profits. As a countermeasure, it should be a policy that all transactions must be carried out by check. If trade in cash is prohibited, black marketing will be difficult. Moreover, I think that in these circumstances, enterprising companies will not be afraid of managing their business because of funds. The circulation of the capital of financial organs will be carried out as in the past. As a result, production will not be interrupted."
The Industrial World:
According to industrialists, it is natural that this emergency measure should have been drafted. From all points of view, the industrial world should co-operate, we think. If the policies in production areas and in distribution areas are not in line with it, the emergency measure will become entirely meaningless. The industrial world does not wish production to be stripped of finances by the authorities. At the same time, the industrial world itself must endeavor to be entirely discreet and not use production funds as speculative funds. In order to do this, business circles themselves should carry out their own readjustments and find a system under which they can concentrate on production. One method is to increase production by the organization of productive unions.
Furthermore, the Industrial Consultative Council held its standing committee on 20 February; and will deliberate on a co-operative policy in regard to the measures so far issued.
ITEM 2 Effect of New Currency on Black Market - Asahi Shimbun - 17 February 1946. Translator: S. Inoue.
What will become of the black markets which have been flourishing since the end of the war as a result of the Emergency Economic measures which were promulgated on 16 February 1946? According to an explanation made by the commerce ministry, black marketeers must follow hereafter a set of regulations made stricter by the emergency measures.
Although they are authorized as retailers, they are not authorized to sell commodities classified in the first and second grades. They can only sell third-grade articles for which a maximum selling rice will be set. After the control over daily necessities has been effected, the distribution route from makers to consumers will be so strictly supervised that stall keepers will be unable to get their goods and the same applies to their bosses end brokers. Thus, they will become obliged to sell com[illegible]odities other than daily necessities and their former glory will decline day by day.
Here we can see another scene reflecting the effect of the emergency measures. On the afternoon of 16 February, many people rushed to the
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ECONOMIC SERIES: 325 (Continued)
ITEM 2 (Continued)
ticket windows of the YURAKU-Cho Station requesting a 50-sen ticket with a ten-yen or 100-yen note. They were very eager to get small denominations which are free from the currency exchange. However, station personnel, bothered by these small-money hunters, will stop this before long.
Providing for robbery cases brought about by the new currency exchange, the Metropolitan Police Communication Section has started to fit out radio cars which will inspect the banks, post offices, and other exchanges whore the new currency is being exchanged, to guard against robberies.
What will be the effect of the emergency measures upon the labor unions? The attitude of the labor unions is not clear because the scope of the commodity prices is not known. However, such rights as the living allowance of 1,000 yen or the three-fold increase of pay, which has already been won by their struggles, will be unaffected. However, there are some unionists who will have their income in excess of 500 yen frozen in a bank deposit.
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HomePress translations [Japan]. Economic Series 0325, 1946-02-18.
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