*Note: This is a provisional translation for reference purposes only.
Wednesday, March 22, 2023
First floor lobby, Annex to the House of Representatives
Price, Wage and Livelihood Headquarters
I would like to speak about two matters.
First, as I reported earlier at the Headquarters for Comprehensive Measures on Prices, Wages and Livelihoods, the surcharge that is added to electricity generated by renewable energy is currently under review in accordance with the related laws and regulations. As a result of the increase in sales revenue of renewable electricity due to the recent surge in market prices, it is expected that the surcharge will decrease by about 2 yen per kWh from April.
It will be applied to the bill in May for electricity consumed for April regardless of the type of contract or amount of consumption, whether it is low voltage, high voltage, or extra high voltage, or whether the user is a business or a household. It is expected to decrease by about 2 yen for all users.
That was my report to the Headquarters.
Nuclear Emergency Response Headquarters
Second, the Nuclear Emergency Response Headquarters has decided to lift the evacuation orders for Specified Reconstruction and Revitalization Base Areas in Namie Town on March 31 and Tomioka Town on April 1. I hope to visit these areas in the near future if circumstances allow.
Of course, the lifting of these orders is not the end goal, but a new start toward reconstruction. I will continue to do my utmost to create an environment in which people can return home with peace of mind and contribute to the reconstruction.
ROK Export Control
Q: Yesterday, President Yoon of the Republic of Korea instructed its authorities to consider treating Japan as a white list country regarding exports. Please tell us your thoughts and how this will affect considerations of the Japanese side's treatment of the ROK in the future.
A: I am aware that at the cabinet meeting on the 21st, President Yoon of the ROK instructed the Minister of Trade, Industry and Energy of Korea to undertake necessary legal procedures to restore Japan's status as a so-called white list country under the ROK's export control system.
Japan has been implementing export controls thoroughly and appropriately based on the international framework. I welcome the review as the ROK is acknowledging our position. On the other hand, I believe that there will be more than a thousand items under the ordinances in addition to the three items in question. These include the catch-all control on conventional weapons, and we will firmly confirm the effectiveness of the ROK's export control system and its operational status for this wide range of items and areas through policy dialogues. Japan will carefully assess the ROK side's future stance and make a responsible decision without forming a conclusion beforehand.