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Japan PM Abe: Will raise sales tax barring severe Lehman-scale shock

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe
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Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Tuesday he will proceed with a scheduled sales tax hike next year unless the economy is hit by a shock on the scale of the collapse of Lehman Brothers in 2008 or the massive earthquake that struck in 2011.

He also told parliament that he was "not thinking at all" about dissolving the lower house and calling a snap election.

A Reuters poll showed many analysts expect Abe to delay raising the sales tax to 10 percent from 8 percent in April next year as weak consumption and exports threaten to derail a fragile economic recovery.

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