TOKYO -- Like many of its fading promises, the Japanese government's pledge to achieve a primary surplus by fiscal 2020 is all but impossible to keep now. But the government seems to care little and is willing to boost spending as calls for restoring Japan's fiscal health fade.
A primary surplus is achieved when a government can finance all its policy spending with tax revenue in a given year without resorting to bond issuance. Achieving this goal by fiscal 2020 is supposed to be an important step for Japan's efforts to put the country's fiscal health on a recovery track.
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