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HOME  > Past issues  > 2018 May 30 - June 5  > Deputy PM Aso-related company received special favor on use of publicly owned land in Fukuoka Pref.
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2018 May 30 - June 5 [SOCIAL ISSUES]

Deputy PM Aso-related company received special favor on use of publicly owned land in Fukuoka Pref.

May 31, 2018
Akahata on May 31 reported that a company operated by Deputy Prime Minister Aso Taro’s close relatives had succeeded in pressuring a city in Fukuoka Prefecture to lend its land to the company for free.

The company is a subsidiary of Aso Corporation whose board members include the deputy prime minister’s brother and wife. The subsidiary uses for free 834 square meters of land in Iizuka City, Aso’s hometown. On the land, a support facility for children with developmental disabilities is located.

Under an agreement initially made with the city, the Aso group member company consented to buy the land by the end of March 2017 after borrowing it without rent for seven years. However, the company in December 2015 requested the city to extend the free-rent lease period, claiming that the payments for the purchase and fixed-property tax will be heavy financial burdens and most likely hamper the continuous operation of the support facility.

At that time, the city turned down the request, saying that the Aso side’s claim is not convincing enough, according to documents that Japanese Communist Party member of the city assembly Kawakami Naoki obtained through the information disclosure system. During the two years since then, the Aso group company held talks with the city ten times regarding the request, while making some compromises. At last, in December 2017, the city government submitted to the city assembly a bill to extend the free-rent lease for five years. The bill was rejected in a committee meeting but adopted in a plenary meeting.

One of conservative members of the city assembly told Akahata that letting the company use the land for free for another five years is far from a good idea and that if the request was not from the Aso-related company, it would not have been accepted.

JCP Kawakami said that the company can easily pay the land price if it receives financial support from its parent company, stressing that the Aso Group should fulfill its social responsibility.
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