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[TOKYO] Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Friday the government must avoid derailing an economic recovery when deciding whether to proceed with a sales tax increase next year.
"We have no plan to abandon our goal of restoring Japan's finances. But in order to achieve fiscal reform, we need to get the economy growing and end deflation," Mr Abe said in a television programme.
Mr Abe said there was no change to his plan of deciding by the end of this year whether to raise the sales tax to 10 per cent from 8 per cent in October 2015. The levy was raised to 8 per cent from 5 per cent in April this year.