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Japan readies $48bn package to ease inflation pain

Gasoline subsidies, low-rate loans planned to protect consumers and businesses

A gasoline station in Tokyo. The largest portion of the government's spending is expected to fund efforts to offset surging crude oil prices.   © Reuters

TOKYO -- Japan plans to spend 6.2 trillion yen ($48.2 billion) on additional gasoline subsidies, low-interest loans and cash assistance to alleviate the pain of consumers and small businesses facing rising prices, Nikkei has learned.

The government frames the economic package, to be compiled as early as Tuesday, as comprehensive relief measures. But critics see them as a short-term remedy, especially as other countries tackle more fundamental changes on energy and other key economic factors in response to Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

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