November 30, 2013
Both the Liberal Democratic Party and the Democratic Party of Japan deeply depend on taxpayers' money, according to their 2012 political funding reports released on November 29.
As the national subsidy to political parties, the LDP received 10.15 billion yen, or 63.9% of its total income. The DPJ accepted 16.50 billion yen in the party subsidy. The DPJ's ratio of dependence on public money stood at 84.4%, up by 1.2 percentage points from the previous year.
The state subsidies to political parties were originally introduced in 1994 under the guise of banning political donations by corporations and other special interest groups. However, the amount of money the LDP accepted from corporations in 2012 increased by 95 million yen from last year to 1.25 billion yen. Corporate donations combined with the state subsidy compose 71.8% of the party's total income.
Ueda Hitoshi, who is in charge of the financial and management commission of the Japanese Communist Party, on November 29 released a comment on its political funding report as follows.
The JCP's finance consists of membership dues, individual contributions, and business incomes such as subscription fees for the organ paper Akahata. We have never accepted donations from corporations or the party subsidy from the state because corporate donations distort politics and the subsidy infringes on the freedom of thought and belief guaranteed by the Constitution.
The JCP earns 87.6% of its total income by publishing organs and magazines. This clearly shows that the party is connected with the general public at the grass-roots level.
In preparation for the 26th Party Congress to be held in January next year, we will make further efforts to increase party membership and organ readership in order to build a powerful and reliable JCP.