A staffing company drives Abe administration to fire workers and get subsidy

This entry is part 3 of 6 in the series Japanese politics and money

On May 10, a Japanese local TV show aired the moment when Heizo Takenaka,he was in charge of many ministerial position at Koizumi era as inducer of neoliberalism through more flexible labor movement, exclaimed against economist–Takaaki Mitsuhashi, “That is insulting!”

Mitsuhashi asked Takenaka about his concern on conflict of interest in Abe’s some advisory councils inviting tops of companies as public councilors, because they could influence with the government in the way that the industries want to do. And he threw the question, “can it be allowable”?

Takenaka replied the question by saying they joined the councils as experts, not as business persons. But just after that, he admitted that today’s many advisory councils are made based on such conflict of interest, and these have to be broken down.
But he, to the end, hadn’t admit his own’s influence to the government on recent relaxation regulation policy to fire employees more easily.

 

In fact, he is the chairman of the board in Pasona Group Inc., the group’s main businesses are temporary staffing servicing, outsourcing and global sourcing workforce, outplacement, or some kinds of workforce broker operations.
The businesses are very close to recent quick determinations of Abe’s “growth strategy” permitting low-skill immigrants, increasing non-permanent workers, and zero overtime payments that would force Japanese employees to work far more hours without paying.

And the government side, Takenaka also sits the chair in Industrial Competitiveness Council(産業競争力会議) with tops of Rakuten, Takeda pharmaceutical company, and other business leaders.

 

Then Mitsuhashi’s concern is probably right. Takenaka seems to gain the profit through the council.
On March 15, 2013, at the forth Industrial Competitiveness Council(page 9), Takenaka suggested to reverse the budget ratio of Employment Adjustment Subsidy–it promotes keeping employee in company, and labor transfer subsidy–it gives money to business owners when they outsource with a employment placement agency. At that time, the ratio is 1000:5, but he offer to reverse it at a burst.
(雇用調整助成金を大幅に縮
小して、労働移動に助成金を出すことは大変重要。是非大規模にやって欲しい。今は、
雇用調整助成金と労働移動への助成金の予算額が 1000:5くらいだが、これを一気に
逆転するようなイメージでやっていただけると信じている。 )  

Almost a year later, Takenaka’s offer partly came true. In March, 2014, the budget of labor transfer subsidy was extended to 1.5 times higher than before. The pre-revised version was only when a fired worker is rehired, but now it is ok when just requiring a employment agency to search for rehiring company.

 

So, at least these ties in councils show a tiny tip of driving force what would be pushing Abe forward. But Pasona seems to be doing in many area according to rumors on the net. I left it for the other blog posts.

 

Data which would support the topic:

List of participants of Advisory councils and check list of correspondent policy of the government.
Regulations on conflict of interest.
Political donations to the Liberal Republic Party by companies.

 

Some source to know Abe’s  “growth strategy” in English:

日本経済再生本部
Industrial Competitiveness Enhancement Action Plan (January 24th, 2014, Cabinet Decision)

Reference:

日刊ゲンダイ|竹中平蔵氏が旗振り 人材会社を潤わす「300億円」助成金
www.kantei.go.jp/jp/singi/keizaisaisei/skkkaigi/dai4/gijiyousi.pdf
労働移動支援助成金(再就職支援奨励金) |厚生労働省
雇用調整助成金|厚生労働省
リストラ促す助成金、3月から拡充 政府の成長戦略:朝日新聞デジタル

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