Approval rate of Japanese PM’s cabinet drops to record low: Media poll

The approval rating for Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s cabinet dropped to 26.5 per cent, a record low since he took office in October 2021, as a majority opposed tax hikes for defence spending, according to a Jiji Press survey.

The latest public opinion survey found that the Kishida cabinet’s approval rating dropped 2.7 percentage points from the previous month to 26.5 per cent, below 30 per cent for the fourth consecutive month, and that the disapproval rating grew 1.1 points to a record high of 43.6 per cent.

A public support rating below 30 per cent is commonly viewed as a danger zone for the cabinet, Xinhua news agency reported.

The result apparently reflected anxiety about Kishida’s plans to raise taxes to boost defence spending as well as higher prices, Jiji Press said on Thursday.

The survey, conducted for four days through Monday, showed that 50.8 per cent of respondents opposed the tax increase for defence spending, far higher than 24.7 per cent in favour of the plan.

Meanwhile, Kishida’s response to the resignation of four cabinet ministers since last October was rated negatively by 56.4 per cent of respondents, while only 18.7 per cent were in favour.

The interview-based survey for January covered 2,000 people above the age of 18 nationwide. Valid responses came from 60.5 per cent.

–IAQNS

int/khz/

20230120-021804

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