Photo/Illutration Prime Minister Fumio Kishida speaks at an Oct. 28 meeting of government and ruling coalition officials held to discuss an economic package. (Koichi Ueda)

The government on Oct. 28 approved an economic package worth about 39 trillion yen ($267 billion) to deal with surging consumer prices and help to “resuscitate the economy,” Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said.

Part of the package will be covered by a supplementary budget totaling 29.1 trillion yen that was approved by the Cabinet and will be submitted to the extraordinary Diet session.

Kishida met with government and ruling coalition officials on Oct. 28 at the prime minister’s office to discuss the package.

He said the spending was needed to mitigate the risk of a global economic meltdown by “dealing with such issues as higher consumer prices and a weak yen and to encourage investment and reform to bring about a structural increase in wages as well as economic growth.”

There are four main pillars in the economic package:

1. About 12.2 trillion yen will be used to reduce the burden of expected higher electricity bills and to enable companies to raise wages;

2. About 4.8 trillion yen will be used to take advantage of the weak yen by promoting tourism and expanding exports by companies;

3. About 6.7 trillion yen is intended to accelerate moves toward “a new capitalism” by setting up reskilling and other programs to invest in personnel, dealing with the declining birthrate, and helping to move toward a carbon-neutral society; and

4. About 10.6 trillion yen is earmarked for disaster management, public works projects and economic and food security.

The first pillar is expected to lower the monthly electric bill for the average family by about 2,000 yen.

Another program will distribute 100,000 yen in coupons from January for every expectant child.