TOKYO Nov 16 Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda said
on Friday it would cause problems over the Bank of Japan's
independence if the government set the central bank's goals and
details of its policy steps.
He said it was seen as common sense globally to maintain the
independence of central banks, including that of Japan.
But he added: "There's no doubt the government needs to
cooperate closely with the Bank of Japan to beat deflation and
boost the economy."
His comments contrast with those of opposition leader Shinzo
Abe, who this week called on the central bank to push interest
rates to zero or below zero to spur lending, prompting the yen
to slide to a six-month low.
Noda was speaking at a news conference after parliament's
lower house was dissolved for a Dec. 16 election that is likely
to return the long-dominant Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) to
power with Abe, a conservative former prime minister, at the