1        Toward Good Labor Administration

I. Promoting labor policies to realize a society in which individuals can work comfortably, and with hope, in a stable environment

The Japanese economy remains recessionary, with ongoing tough employment conditions resulting in a current total unemployed rate at well over 4%.Meanwhile, the medium- to long-term outlook indicates that the Japanese economy is changing drastically, in large part under the influence of a globalizing economy. In addition to this there is a declining birthrate and an aging of the population. Under these circumstances there is a growing diversified reassessment amongst the public of their occupations and lifestyles as well as changes in the conventional employment structure.
      In order to cope with such tough conditions, it is the vital role for the labor administration to promote extensive measures, specifically, such measures as are incorporated in the "General Plan for Stimulating Employment." These include measures to mitigate anxiety over employment, measures targeted at maintaining stable employment, as well as measures to assist the unemployed. Moreover, given Japan's ongoing medium- to long-term structural changes, it is important to actively promote measures to stimulate employment while at the same time develop the abilities of workers. This includes the creation of attractive workplaces, and of a stable working environment so that workers can confidently contribute to the Japanese economy.
      In addition, it is important that elderly citizens have the opportunity to work actively, and that female workers can continue working while nursing their children. It is important to cultivate an environment in which individuals feel motivated to work and fully express their individuality and abilities.
      In view of these points, the Ministry of Labour is involved in actively promoting the following measures in order to realize a society in which people can work comfortably and with hope for their future.
1 Employment measures to secure a stable working life
2 Measures to prepare an environment in which individuality and a range of abilities are demonstrated
3 Measures to secure a stable and fulfilling working life
4 Measures to develop vocational abilities for human resources that will contribute to the Japanese economy
5 Employment measures for elderly citizens
6 Measures to help persons with disabilities and persons with other special considerations
7 Measures appropriate to the foreign working population
8 Measures to make active contributions to the international community
9 Measures to develop better industrial relations

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