© Reuters. Fumio Kishida, Japan’s prime minister, speaks at a news conference following the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (Quad) leaders meeting at the prime minister’s official residence in Tokyo, Japan May 24, 2022. Kiyoshi Ota/Pool via REUTERS

By Kantaro Komiya

TOKYO (Reuters) -Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said on Friday his government and ruling coalition continued to debate capital gains tax as “one of the issues”, keeping alive an idea once apparently shelved amid a backlash from investors worried over market effects.

When pressed by a lawmaker for comment, Kishida told the parliament that the debate had “never ended.”

“Ruling party tax panels are continuing to debate, and I hope we reach a conclusion out of the debate,” the prime minister said.

After taking office last year, Kishida proposed a review that would consider the merits of a capital gains tax. But the possibility appeared to be set aside when investors objected to its potential effect on the stock market.

He proposed a tax review as part of broader agenda aimed at generating economic growth and wealth redistribution.

But on Friday he said the debate merely had moved to the background as his government had prioritised boosting wages, assets and incomes to achieve a virtuous cycle for growth.

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