Japan’s economy not spared in 2020

Japan’s economy not spared in 2020

East Asia Forum·2020-12-12 00:03

Author: Masahiko Takeda, ANU

Japan is facing a third wave of COVID-19 infections and the waves are getting higher each time. Debate is once again raging about the government’s balancing act between pandemic control and preservation of economic activity.

The government’s task is to solve a complicated dynamic optimisation problem that it has never confronted before this pandemic. To make matters worse, different groups of people are being affected differently, making it impossible to please everyone. The only solution to all is a safe and effective vaccine, for which the government can only place an order and await delivery. It is easy to criticise the government’s handling — or at times mishandling — of the pandemic, but it is like criticising a first-time surfer for his failure to ride well over waves.

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Japan Commentary Politics Economy Finance

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