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Pension Reforms in Japan

  • Kenichiro Kashiwase
  • Masahiro Nozaki
  • Kiichi Tokuoka

This paper analyzes various reform options for Japan’s public pension in light of large fiscal consolidation needs of the country. The most attractive option is to increase the pension eligibility age in line with high and rising life expectancy. This would have a positive effect on long-run economic growth and would be relatively fair in sharing the burden of fiscal adjustment between younger and older generations. Other attractive options include better targeting by “clawing back†a small portion of pension benefits from wealthy retirees, reducing preferential tax treatment of pension benefit incomes, and collecting contributions from dependent spouses of employees, who are currently eligible for pension benefits even though they make no contributions. These options, if implemented concurrently, could reduce the government annual subsidy and the government deficit by up to 1¼ percent of GDP by 2020.

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Paper provided by International Monetary Fund in its series IMF Working Papers with number 12/285.

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Length: 21
Date of creation: 04 Dec 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:imf:imfwpa:12/285
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  1. Jonathan Gruber & David A. Wise, 2004. "Social Security Programs and Retirement around the World: Micro-Estimation," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number grub04-1.
  2. Boris Cournède & Frédéric Gonand, 2006. "Restoring Fiscal Sustainability in the Euro Area: Raise Taxes or Curb Spending?," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 520, OECD Publishing.
  3. Kiichi Tokuoka, 2012. "Intergenerational Implications of Fiscal Consolidation in Japan," IMF Working Papers 12/197, International Monetary Fund.
  4. Alicia H. Munnell & Mauricio Soto & Alex Golub-Sass, 2008. "Will People Be Healthy Enough to Work Longer?," Working Papers, Center for Retirement Research at Boston College wp2008-11, Center for Retirement Research, revised Aug 2008.
  5. Jens Arnold, 2008. "Do Tax Structures Affect Aggregate Economic Growth?: Empirical Evidence from a Panel of OECD Countries," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 643, OECD Publishing.
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