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【国家総合職・外務専門職】和文英訳(安倍首相所信表明演説)

広告

安倍首相には、初心を思い出して欲しいね。

引用)

政権批判「福田の声」無視するな/政界地獄耳

2017年8月7日8時26分 日刊スポーツ
...
 ★元首相・福田康夫と言えば冷静沈着でクールなイメージだが、意外と感情をあらわにすることもあった。福田内閣では官房長官を現首相・安倍晋三が務めたが、安倍はどんなことを学んだのだろうか。福田内閣は今問題となる内閣人事局や公文書管理体制を早くから訴えてきた。「政府や自治体が持つ記録は、国民の共有財産なのだから、大事に保存して次世代に引き継がなくてはいけない」という発想が、今の霞が関幹部や政府中枢に理解が及んでいないことが最大の失敗だ。

 ★内閣改造と前後して、福田は安倍政権に苦言を呈すインタビューを受けた。「各省庁の中堅以上の幹部は皆、官邸(の顔色)を見て仕事をしている。恥ずかしく、国家の破滅に近づいている。官邸の言うことを聞こうと、忖度(そんたく)以上のことをしようとして、すり寄る人もいる。能力のない人が偉くなっており、むちゃくちゃだ。自民党がつぶれる時は、役所も一緒につぶれる。自殺行為だ。(内閣人事局について)政治家が人事をやってはいけない。安倍内閣最大の失敗だ」とした。

 ★また安倍内閣を「(自民党内に)競争相手がいなかっただけだ。(脅かすような)野党もいないし、非常に恵まれている状況だ。そういう時に役人まで動員して、政権維持に当たらせてはいけない」。これほど痛烈な政権批判はない。福田は派閥経由で安倍に直接苦言どころか直言も可能な立場だ。それをわざわざ取材に答える形でメディア経由で伝える手法を選んだ。それ相当の思いがあったはずだ。ところが内閣人事局について変えていこうとか、公文書についての議論を深めたいという声は党からも閣内からも聞こえてこない。福田の声に正面から向き合わずして改革も革命もないはずだ。無視するな。

問い)

平成25年1月28日
第百八十三回国会における安倍内閣総理大臣所信表明演説

まず、アルジェリアで発生したテロ事件について、一言、申し上げます。

 事件発生以来、政府としては、総力を挙げて情報収集と人命救出に取り組んでまいりました。

 しかしながら、世界の最前線で活躍する、何の罪もない日本人が犠牲となったことは、痛恨の極みです。残された御家族の方々のお気持ちを想うと、悲痛の念に堪えません。

 無辜(むこ)の市民を巻き込んだ卑劣なテロ行為は、決して許されるものではなく、断固として非難します。私たちは、今般の事件の検証を行い、国民の生命・財産を守り抜きます。国際社会と引き続き連携し、テロと闘い続けます。冒頭、その決意を申し上げます。

Policy Speech by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to the 183rd Session of the Diet
Monday, January 28, 2013

I would like to begin my address with a few words concerning the terrorist incident that took place in Algeria.

Since the incident occurred, the government was engaged in fully concerted efforts to collect information on and rescue the lives of the hostages.

And yet, it is a matter of deepest regret that Japanese actively working on the front lines around the world, entirely innocent, have become victims. I am overwhelmed by anguish and heartache when I think of the feelings of the families left behind.

Despicable terrorist acts that involve innocent citizens are absolutely unforgivable and Japan resolutely condemns them. We will verify the facts concerning this incident and fully defend the lives and the assets of our nationals. As I begin my address to you today I state my determination that Japan will continue to fight terrorism in ongoing coordination with the international community.

(はじめに)
 昨年末の総選挙による国民の審判を経て、自由民主党公明党連立政権を発足させ、第九十六代内閣総理大臣を拝命いたしました。

 私は、かつて病のために職を辞し、大きな政治的挫折を経験した人間です。国家の舵(かじ)取りをつかさどる重責を改めてお引き受けするからには、過去の反省を教訓として心に刻み、丁寧な対話を心掛けながら、真摯に国政運営に当たっていくことを誓います。

 国家国民のために再び我が身を捧げんとする私の決意の源は、深き憂国の念にあります。危機的な状況にある我が国の現状を正していくために、為(な)さなければならない使命があると信じるからです。

 デフレと円高の泥沼から抜け出せず、五十兆円とも言われる莫大な国民の所得と産業の競争力が失われ、どれだけ真面目に働いても暮らしが良くならない、日本経済の危機。

 三十二万人近くにも及ぶ方々が住み慣れた故郷(ふるさと)に戻れないまま、遅々として進んでいない、東日本大震災からの復興の危機。

 外交政策の基軸が揺らぎ、その足元を見透かすかのように、我が国固有の領土・領海・領空や主権に対する挑発が続く、外交・安全保障の危機。

 そして、国の未来を担う子どもたちの中で陰湿ないじめが相次ぎ、この国の歴史や伝統への誇りを失い、世界に伍(ご)していくべき学力の低下が危惧される、教育の危機。

 このまま、手をこまねいているわけにはいきません。

 皆さん。今こそ、額に汗して働けば必ず報われ、未来に夢と希望を抱くことができる、真っ当な社会を築いていこうではありませんか。

 そのためには、日本の未来をおびやかしている数々の危機を何としても突破していかなければなりません。

 野党として過ごした三年余り、全国津々浦々で現場の声を丹念に拾い集め、政策のあるべき姿を考え抜いてまいりました。政権与党に復帰した今こそ、温めてきた政策を具体的に実現させ、国民と共に、現下の危機突破に邁(まい)進します。

 内閣発足に当たって、私は全ての閣僚に「経済再生」「震災復興」「危機管理」に全力を挙げるよう一斉に指示をいたしました。危機の突破は、全閣僚が一丸となって取り組むべき仕事です。

 同時に、与野党の別を問わず、国政に携わる全ての国会議員が担うべき責任でもあるはずです。

 この議場に集う全ての国会議員諸氏に訴えます。危機を突破せんとする国家の確固たる意思を示すため、与野党の叡(えい)智を結集させ、国力を最大限に発揮させようではありませんか。各党各会派の御理解と御協力を切に求めてやみません。

(Introduction)

Through the judgment of the people handed down in the general election at the end of last year, a coalition government of the Liberal Democratic Party and the New Komeito Party was inaugurated, and I was designated as the nation's 96th Prime Minister.

I am someone who has suffered a major political setback, as I have once resigned from this position due to illness. Having once again accepted the heavy responsibility of presiding over the steering of the nation, I vow to manage national policy in a sincere manner, taking to heart reflections and lessons from the past while keeping in mind the importance of careful dialogue.

The source of my determination to devote myself once more to working for the nation and the people lies in my deep sense of patriotism. This is because I believe that I have a mission which must be undertaken in order to rectify Japan's present situation of finding itself in a critical situation.

There is the crisis of the Japanese economy, in which we have been unable to extract ourselves from the bog of deflation and a strengthening yen, while the enormous sum of what is said to be up to 50 trillion yen in national income has been lost along with industrial competitiveness, and no matter how diligently one works, one's day-to-day living never improves.

There is the crisis of reconstruction from the Great East Japan Earthquake, in which progress has been sluggish while nearly 320,000 people remain unable to return to their beloved hometowns.

There is the crisis of our diplomacy and security, in which the cornerstone of our foreign policy has become eroded and, as if the fragility of our position has been perceived by others, there have been ongoing provocations against our sovereign territory, territorial waters, and territorial airspace as well as against our sovereignty itself.

And, there is the crisis of education, in which insidious bullying occurs in one case after another among the children who will shoulder the future of Japan, while pride in this nation's history and traditions wanes and there are concerns regarding declining academic achievement, which should rank among the world's best.

It simply will not do for us to stand idly by.

Honorable members of the Diet, shall we not now build a decent society where people who work hard are certain to be rewarded and where it is possible to embrace dreams and hopes for the future?

If we are to do so, we must do whatever it takes to break through the array of crises threatening Japan's future.

In the just over three years spent as an opposition party, the LDP painstakingly went all around the country to gather the views of people there in each locale and emerged with a vision of how our policies should be. Now that we have achieved this return to being a ruling party, we will realize in concrete form the policies that we have been nurturing over this time and, together with the people, push forward to break through the crises here at hand.

Upon inaugurating my Cabinet, I simultaneously instructed all of the ministers to devote themselves to the areas of economic revival, reconstruction from the earthquake disaster, and crisis management. Breaking through these crises is a job that should be undertaken by the entire Cabinet moving forward as one.

At the same time, it is also a responsibility to be shouldered by all members of the Diet engaged in national administration, from both ruling and opposition parties alike.

I appeal to all the honorable members of the Diet gathered in this chamber. Let us mobilize the wisdom of the ruling and opposition parties and demonstrate Japan's strength to the greatest possible extent in order to indicate the steadfast intention of the nation, which is about to break through these crises. I earnestly seek the understanding and cooperation of each party and parliamentary group on this matter.

 

(経済再生)
 我が国にとって最大かつ喫緊の課題は、経済の再生です。

 私が何故、数ある課題のうち経済の再生に最もこだわるのか。それは、長引くデフレや円高が、「頑張る人は報われる」という社会の信頼の基盤を根底から揺るがしていると考えるからです。

 政府がどれだけ所得の分配を繰り返しても、持続的な経済成長を通じて富を生み出すことができなければ、経済全体のパイは縮んでいってしまいます。そうなれば、一人ひとりがどんなに頑張ってみても、個人の手元に残る所得は減っていくばかりです。私たちの安心を支える社会保障の基盤も揺らぎかねません。

 これまでの延長線上にある対応では、デフレや円高から抜け出すことはできません。だからこそ、私は、これまでとは次元の違う大胆な政策パッケージを提示します。断固たる決意をもって、「強い経済」を取り戻していこうではありませんか。

 既に、経済再生の司令塔として「日本経済再生本部」を設置し、「経済財政諮問会議」も再起動させました。この布陣をフル回転させ、大胆な金融政策、機動的な財政政策、そして民間投資を喚起する成長戦略という「三本の矢」で、経済再生を推し進めます。

 金融政策については、従来の政策枠組みを大胆に見直す共同声明を、日本銀行との間で取りまとめました。日本銀行において二%の物価安定目標をできるだけ早期に実現することを含め、政府と日本銀行がそれぞれの責任において、共同声明の内容をきちんと実行していくことが重要であり、政府と日本銀行の一層の緊密な連携を図ってまいります。

 加えて、先にまとめた「緊急経済対策」で、景気を下支えし、成長力を強化します。これから提出する補正予算は、その裏付けとなるものです。「復興・防災対策」「成長による富の創出」「暮らしの安心・地域活性化」という三つを重点分野として、大胆な予算措置を講じます。速やかに成立させ、実行に移せるよう、各党各会派の格別の御理解と御協力をお願い申し上げます。

 他方、財政出動をいつまでも続けるわけにはいきません。民間の投資と消費が持続的に拡大する成長戦略を策定し、実行してまいります。

 iPS細胞という世紀の大発明は、新しい薬や治療法を開発するための臨床試験の段階が見えています。実用化されれば、「健康で長生きできる社会」の実現に貢献するのみならず、新たな富と雇用も生み出します。イノベーションと制度改革は、社会的課題の解決に結び付くことによって、暮らしに新しい価値をもたらし、経済再生の原動力となります。

 最も大切なのは、未知の領域に果敢に挑戦をしていく精神です。皆さん。今こそ、世界一を目指していこうではありませんか。

 世界中から投資や人材を惹(ひ)きつけ、若者もお年寄りも、年齢や障害の有無にかかわらず、全ての人々が生きがいを感じ、何度でもチャンスを与えられる社会。働く女性が自らのキャリアを築き、男女が共に仕事と子育てを容易に両立できる社会。中小企業・小規模事業者が躍動し、農山漁村の豊かな資源が成長の糧となる、地域の魅力があふれる社会。そうした「あるべき社会像」を、確かな成長戦略に結び付けることによって、必ずや「強い経済」を取り戻してまいります。

 同時に、中長期の財政健全化に向けてプライマリーバランスの黒字化を目指します。

(Economic Revival)
The greatest issue and indeed an urgent issue for Japan is the revival of the economy.

Of the numerous issues Japan faces, why do I insist on reviving the economy most of all? It is because I consider prolonged deflation and the appreciation of the yen to be shaking from their very base the foundations of trust in society that "those who work hard shall be rewarded."

No matter how much the government redistributes income, unless it succeeds in creating wealth through continuous economic growth, the size of the overall economic "pie" will continue to shrink. Should that occur, then however hard a person may work, the amount of income that remains in hand for that individual would only decrease. It could also cause the foundations of social security, which serves as an anchor for our peace of mind, to become shaky.

It will be impossible for us to break free of deflation and the appreciating yen by dealing with them in ways that are an extension of what we have done thus far. That is why I will set forth a bold policy package of a nature altogether different from what has come before. Let us move forward in restoring a "robust economy" with a firm sense of resolve.

I have already established the Headquarters for Japan's Economic Revitalization as a "control tower" for economic revival and reinstated the Council on Economic and Fiscal Policy. Making this lineup function in high gear, I will press forward with economic revival under the three prongs of bold monetary policy, flexible fiscal policy, and a growth strategy that encourages private sector investment.

In the area of monetary policy, the government and the Bank of Japan put together a joint statement that daringly overhauls the policy framework that has existed until now. It is important that the government and the Bank of Japan each faithfully carry out the contents of the joint statement within its respective area of responsibility, including the Bank of Japan bringing a 2 percent price stability target into reality in the earliest possible time. The government and the Bank of Japan will engage in even closer cooperation in the future.

In addition, the recently compiled Emergency Economic Measures provide support for business activity while reinforcing our growth potential. The supplementary budget that we will submit in the days ahead provides the backing for those countermeasures. It sets forth bold budgetary provisions, with the three priority areas of "reconstruction and disaster prevention", "the creation of wealth through growth", and "securing safety of people's livelihood and regional revitalization." I ask in particular for the understanding and the cooperation of each party and parliamentary group so that this budget can be passed promptly and transition into implementation.

At the same time, it will be impossible to mobilize fiscal spending indefinitely. We will formulate and then implement a growth strategy in which private-sector investment and consumption expand continuously.

iPS cells, one of the momentous inventions of the century, are now approaching a stage at which clinical tests to develop new drugs and cures are firmly within reach. When put into practical use, this research will not only contribute to the realization of a "society in which people can live long lives in good health" but also create new wealth and employment. Innovation and system reform will lead to the resolution of social issues, thereby bringing about new values in our daily lives and becoming a driving factor for economic revival.

The most important thing will be a spirit of courageously taking up the challenge to explore unknown fields. My fellow members of the Diet, let us now more than ever aim to be the best in the world.

We aim to be a society that attracts investment and human resources from all around the globe, in which all people, both young and old, and regardless of age or disability, feel a purpose in life, and in which people are given chances again and again. We aim at a society in which working women can forge their own careers, and one in which both men and women find it easy to reconcile jobs and child-rearing. We aim to have a society in which small- and medium-sized enterprises and small-scale employers are dynamic, and a society overflowing with attractiveness particular to each region, in which the abundant resources of our agricultural, mountain, and fishing communities nourish growth. By linking such a vision of "the society we seek to achieve" with a reliable strategy for growth, we will certainly restore a robust economy in the future.

At the same time, we will aim to achieve a surplus in the primary balance in order to put public finances on a sound footing over the medium to long term.

 

(震災復興)
 東日本大震災の被災地は、二度目の厳しい冬を迎えています。私は、昨年末に総理に就任した直後に、最初の訪問地として迷うことなく福島を選びました。そして、先日は宮城を訪れ、これからも、可能な限り現地に足を運ぶつもりです。

 被災地のことを想う時、私は、ある少女とその家族の物語を思い出さずにはいられません。東日本大震災で、小学校三年生だった彼女は、ひいおばあさんとお母さんを亡くしました。悲しみに暮れる家族のもとに、被災から二か月後のある日、一通の手紙が届きます。それは、二年前、少女が小学校に入学した後に、お母さんが少女に内緒で書いた「未来へ宛てた手紙」でした。

 手紙には、入学当初の苦労話の後に、こう綴(つづ)られていました。

 「げんきに学校にいってくれるだけで、とてもあんしんしていました。このてがみを みんなでよんでいるところを たのしみにして、これから おかあさんは がんばっていきます」

 この手紙を受け取ったのは、私がかつて被災地で出会い、先般、再会を果たした少女です。その際、彼女は、私の目をじっと見つめ、「小学校を建てて欲しい」と言いました。過去を振り返るのではなく、将来への希望を伝えてくれたことに、私は強く心を打たれました。

 故郷(ふるさと)の復興は、被災地の皆さんが生きる希望を取り戻す作業です。今を懸命に生きる人々の笑顔を取り戻す。それは、その笑顔をただ願いながら天国で私たちを見守っている犠牲者の御霊(みたま)に報いる途(みち)でもあるはずです。

 復興という言葉を唱えるだけでは、何も変わりません。まずは、政府の体制を大転換します。これまでの行政の縦割りを排し、復興庁がワンストップで要望を吸い上げ、現場主義を貫きます。今般の補正予算においても思い切った予算措置を講じ、被災地の復興と福島の再生を必ずや加速してまいります。

 

(Reconstruction from the Earthquake Disaster)

The areas stricken by the Great East Japan Earthquake are now in the midst of their second harsh winter. When selecting the very first place I would visit immediately after assuming the post of prime minister at the end of last year, I chose Fukushima without any hesitation whatsoever. I also visited Miyagi the other day and from here on as well, I intend to visit these affected places as often as I can.

When thinking of the affected areas, I cannot help calling to mind the story of one little girl and her family. This little girl, then in her third year of elementary school, lost her great-grandmother and her mother in the Great East Japan Earthquake. One day two months after the disaster struck, a letter was delivered to the family, which was overwhelmed with grief. It was a "letter to the future" that two years before, the girl's mother had written to her daughter secretly, after the little girl had entered elementary school.

After referring to the struggles they had had when the girl first entered school, the letter continued, saying, "Mommy is so relieved to see that you are doing so well going to school. From now on Mommy is going to try her best and she is looking forward to seeing you read this letter with everyone."

The person who received this letter was a little girl whom I had happened to meet before in the disaster area and whom I was able to meet again recently. When I spoke with her, she looked intently into my eyes and said, "I want you to build an elementary school." I was deeply touched by the fact that she had conveyed her hopes for the future rather than looking back on the past.

The reconstruction of hometowns is an undertaking that will restore the hope to live among the people in the disaster areas. Restoring the smiling faces of the people who are industriously living in the present may also very well be a way to repay the departed souls of the victims watching over us from heaven, who are wishing only for those smiling faces.

But nothing will change just by appealing for reconstruction verbally. First of all, we will undertake a major conversion of the government system. We will engage in a hands-on approach under which we will push aside the vertically-segmented administrative structure that has been in place until now and have the Reconstruction Agency take up all requests as a "one stop" focal point. We will intrepidly set forth budgetary provisions within the upcoming supplementary budget as well, and we will without fail accelerate the reconstruction of the disaster areas and the revival of Fukushima.

 

(外交・安全保障)
 外交・安全保障についても、抜本的な立て直しが急務です。

 何よりも、その基軸となる日米同盟を一層強化して、日米の絆を取り戻さなければなりません。二月第三週に予定される日米首脳会談において、緊密な日米同盟の復活を内外に示していく決意です。同時に、普天間飛行場の移設を始めとする沖縄の負担の軽減に全力で取り組みます。

 外交は、単に周辺諸国との二国間関係だけを見つめるのではなく、地球儀を眺めるように世界全体を俯瞰(ふかん)して、自由、民主主義、基本的人権、法の支配といった、基本的価値に立脚し、戦略的な外交を展開していくのが基本であります。

 大きく成長していくアジア太平洋地域において、我が国は、経済のみならず、安全保障や文化・人的交流など様々な分野で、先導役として貢献を続けてまいります。

 本年は、日アセアン友好協力四十周年に当たります。私は、先日、ベトナム、タイ、インドネシアの三か国を訪問し、日本に対する期待の高さを改めて肌で感じることができました。二〇一五年の共同体構築に向けて、成長センターとして発展を続けるアセアン諸国との関係を強化していくことは、地域の平和と繁栄にとって不可欠であり、日本の国益でもあります。この訪問を皮切りに、今後とも、世界情勢を広く視野に入れた戦略的な外交を展開してまいります。

 我が国を取り巻く情勢は、厳しさを増しています。国境離島の適切な振興・管理、警戒警備の強化に万全を尽くし、この内閣の下では、国民の生命・財産と領土・領海・領空は、断固として守り抜いていくことをここに宣言します。

 併せて、今般のアルジェリアでのテロ事件は、国家としての危機管理の重要性について改めて警鐘を鳴らすものでした。テロやサイバー攻撃、大規模災害、重大事故などの危機管理対応について、二十四時間・三百六十五日体制で、更なる緊張感を持って対処します。

 そして何よりも、拉致問題の解決です。全ての拉致被害者の御家族が御自身の手で肉親を抱きしめる日が訪れるまで、私の使命は終わりません。北朝鮮に「対話と圧力」の方針を貫き、全ての拉致被害者の安全確保及び即時帰国、拉致に関する真相究明、拉致実行犯の引渡しの三点に向けて、全力を尽くします。

 (Diplomacy and Security)

There is also a pressing need for us to undertake a drastic reshaping in the areas of diplomacy and security.

Above all, we must further reinforce the Japan-U.S. alliance, which is the cornerstone of Japanese diplomacy and security, and fully restore the bonds of friendship between Japan and the U.S. At the Japan-U.S. summit meeting scheduled for the third week of February, I am determined to demonstrate to both the people of Japan and people around the world that the close ties of the Japan-U.S. alliance have been restored. At the same time, I will be devoting my greatest possible efforts to lightening Okinawa's burden, including through the relocation of Futenma Air Station.

Fundamental to our diplomacy will be for us to develop a strategic diplomacy based on the fundamental values of freedom, democracy, basic human rights, and the rule of law, and we view the world as a whole, as if looking at a globe, rather than look only at bilateral relations with neighboring countries.

In the Asia-Pacific region which will grow dramatically, Japan will continue to make contributions as a leading role in not only economics but also a variety of other fields, including security as well as cultural and people-to-people exchanges.

This year marks the 40th year of friendship and cooperation between Japan and ASEAN. Recently I visited the three countries of Viet Nam, Thailand, and Indonesia, where I was once again able to feel very acutely the high degree of expectations that these countries hold for Japan. Strengthening Japan's relations with the countries of ASEAN, which will continue to develop as a growth center as it works towards the establishment of an ASEAN Community by 2015, will be indispensable for the peace and prosperity of the region while also being in Japan's national interests. Having started with this recent trip, I will continue to develop strategic diplomacy that looks at the global situation from a broad perspective.

The situation surrounding Japan is becoming increasingly severe. I hereby declare that I will take all possible measures to ensure the appropriate development and administration of our remote border islands and the reinforcement of their security, and that under this Cabinet, we will fully defend in a resolute manner the lives and assets of our nationals as well as our territory, territorial waters, and territorial airspace.

Furthermore, the recent terrorist incident in Algeria has sounded a warning to us once more regarding the importance of crisis management as a nation. We will handle such matters with even greater vigilance under a 24-hour, 365-day system for crisis management responses, including terrorist or cyber attacks as well as large-scale natural disasters and major accidents.

And then, above all else is the resolution of the abduction issue. My mission will not be finished until the day arrives that the families of all the abductees are able to hold their relatives in their arms. Under a policy of "dialogue and pressure" with North Korea, I will do my utmost to achieve the three points of ensuring the safety and the immediate return to Japan of all the abductees, obtaining a full accounting concerning the abductions, and realizing the handover of the perpetrators of the abductions.

 

(おわりに)
 我が国が直面する最大の危機は、日本人が自信を失ってしまったことにあります。確かに、日本経済の状況は深刻であり、今日明日で解決できるような簡単な問題ではありません。

 しかし、「自らの力で成長していこう」という気概を失ってしまっては、個人も、国家も、明るい将来を切り拓くことはできません。芦田元総理は、戦後の焼け野原の中で、「将来はどうなるだろうか」と思い悩む若者たちを諭して、こう言いました。「『どうなるだろうか』と他人に問いかけるのではなく、『我々自身の手によって運命を開拓するほかに道はない』」、と。

 この演説をお聴きの国民一人ひとりへ訴えます。何よりも、自らへの誇りと自信を取り戻そうではありませんか。私たちも、そして日本も、日々、自らの中に眠っている新しい力を見出して、これからも成長していくことができるはずです。今ここにある危機を突破し、未来を切り拓いていく覚悟を共に分かち合おうではありませんか。

 「強い日本」を創るのは、他の誰でもありません。私たち自身です。

 御清聴ありがとうございました。

(Closing Remarks)

The greatest crisis facing Japan lies in the Japanese people having lost confidence. It is certainly true that the Japanese economy is in a serious state and that these are not simple issues that can be solved today or tomorrow.

However, should we lose the mettle to say, "I will grow going forward, making use of my own abilities," neither individuals nor countries will be able to carve out a bright future. Former Prime Minister Hitoshi Ashida said the following amidst the burnt-out ruins after the war, urging on young people who were brooding over how the future would turn out. "Don't go asking others 'How will it all turn out'; instead remember that 'There is no path forward other than by carving out our own fate with our own hands.'"

I would also like to appeal to each of the Japanese people listening to this address. The most important thing is to restore pride and confidence in yourself, is it not? We, and indeed Japan as well, can surely grow every day in the future by uncovering new capabilities lying dormant within us. Let us share a readiness to break through the crises confronting us here and now and carve out our future.

There is no one else who will create a "strong Japan." It is none other than we ourselves who will do it.

Thank you for listening.