March 28, 2018 / 5:40 AM / a year ago

Japan PM Abe says no change to sales tax hike plan

Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe attends at an upper house parliamentary session in Tokyo, Japan March 28, 2018. REUTERS/Issei Kato

TOKYO (Reuters) - Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Wednesday there was no change to his plan to raise the country’s sales tax hike next year unless the economy is hit by a huge external shock.

“If the economy is hit by a shock on the magnitude of the Lehman crisis, we need to reconsider. Otherwise, we will proceed with the scheduled sales tax hike,” Abe told parliament, adding that the government will take steps to counter any damage the higher levy poses on the economy.

Abe has pledged to raise Japan’s sales tax to 10 percent from 8 percent in October next year.

Reporting by Leika Kihara

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