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Japan government names new BOJ pick

TOKYO, Japan (AP) — The government has chosen another nominee for the next Bank of Japan governor in an effort to end the deadlock over the selection after the opposition voted down the initial pick.

But a senior opposition legislator said he was opposed to the nomination of Koji Tanami, 68, governor of Japan Bank for International Cooperation. And a former vice finance minister noted that Tanami was a former Finance Ministry bureaucrat and may endanger the autonomy of the Bank of Japan — the same reason the government’s first pick was voted down.

It would be hard to find any reasons to support him, opposition lawmaker Kenji Yamaoka said on nationally televised news.

The confrontation has brewed for weeks, and Japan’s inability to come up with a new central bank governor has been a major embarrassment. The world’s second largest economy is in danger of slipping into a recession after six years of moderate growth, battered by the plunging dollar, volatile stock markets and soaring oil prices.

We have always said that we are opposed to having a vacuum, in the post of Bank of Japan governor, chief government spokesman Nobutaka Machimura told reporters. We believe our proposal will be accepted.

The term of Bank of Japan Gov. Toshihiko Fukui ends Wednesday.

The opposition, which controls the upper house, blocked the appointment of the initial nominee — Bank of Japan Deputy Gov. Toshiro Muto — in a parliamentary vote last week. The opposition said Muto was too politically connected as a former Finance Ministry bureaucrat.

Preliminary talks Monday between the ruling coalition, led by the Liberal Democratic Party, and the opposition, mainly the Democratic Party of Japan, failed to reach a compromise.

The ruling party coalition controls the more powerful lower house. The BOJ chief nomination needs approval from both houses of parliament.

Japanese media reports say the idea of keeping Fukui in office was proposed informally. That option was dismissed by the opposition, which has a chance at possible political leadership for the first time in decades and is angry that the government has rammed through some bills that require approval from only the lower house.

Tanami joined the Finance Ministry in 1964. In October, he became the head of JBIC, a government financial institution that handles lending and other operations to promote Japanese trade and growth.

If an agreement is not reached in time for Fukui’s departure, former BOJ Executive Director Masaaki Shirakawa — whose nomination as a BOJ deputy governor was approved last week — could step in as interim bank chief.

The government named as the other deputy Kiyohiko Nishimura, former University of Tokyo professor and now a member of the BOJ policy board, Kyodo News reported. E-mail to a friend

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Japan government names new BOJ pick – found here.

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March 18, 2008 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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Japan government names new BOJ pick

TOKYO, Japan (AP) — The government has chosen another nominee for the next Bank of Japan governor in an effort to end the deadlock over the selection after the opposition voted down the initial pick.

But a senior opposition legislator said he was opposed to the nomination of Koji Tanami, 68, governor of Japan Bank for International Cooperation. And a former vice finance minister noted that Tanami was a former Finance Ministry bureaucrat and may endanger the autonomy of the Bank of Japan — the same reason the government’s first pick was voted down.

It would be hard to find any reasons to support him, opposition lawmaker Kenji Yamaoka said on nationally televised news.

The confrontation has brewed for weeks, and Japan’s inability to come up with a new central bank governor has been a major embarrassment. The world’s second largest economy is in danger of slipping into a recession after six years of moderate growth, battered by the plunging dollar, volatile stock markets and soaring oil prices.

We have always said that we are opposed to having a vacuum, in the post of Bank of Japan governor, chief government spokesman Nobutaka Machimura told reporters. We believe our proposal will be accepted.

The term of Bank of Japan Gov. Toshihiko Fukui ends Wednesday.

The opposition, which controls the upper house, blocked the appointment of the initial nominee — Bank of Japan Deputy Gov. Toshiro Muto — in a parliamentary vote last week. The opposition said Muto was too politically connected as a former Finance Ministry bureaucrat.

Preliminary talks Monday between the ruling coalition, led by the Liberal Democratic Party, and the opposition, mainly the Democratic Party of Japan, failed to reach a compromise.

The ruling party coalition controls the more powerful lower house. The BOJ chief nomination needs approval from both houses of parliament.

Japanese media reports say the idea of keeping Fukui in office was proposed informally. That option was dismissed by the opposition, which has a chance at possible political leadership for the first time in decades and is angry that the government has rammed through some bills that require approval from only the lower house.

Tanami joined the Finance Ministry in 1964. In October, he became the head of JBIC, a government financial institution that handles lending and other operations to promote Japanese trade and growth.

If an agreement is not reached in time for Fukui’s departure, former BOJ Executive Director Masaaki Shirakawa — whose nomination as a BOJ deputy governor was approved last week — could step in as interim bank chief.

The government named as the other deputy Kiyohiko Nishimura, former University of Tokyo professor and now a member of the BOJ policy board, Kyodo News reported. E-mail to a friend

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Japan government names new BOJ pick – found here.

March 18, 2008 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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