November 9, 2011
HONG KONG – Japan’s national debt is on track to exceed 1 quadrillion yen ($12.8 trillion) by the end of the fiscal year next March, with the debt rising faster than Ministry of Finance forecasts because of spending tied to aid and rebuilding from the devastating earthquake and tsunami earlier this year, according to a report Monday in the Nikkei newspaper. A quadrillion is equivalent to 1,000 trillion. Tokyo had planned to boost its borrowings this fiscal year by ¥71 trillion, bringing the deficit to ¥995.92 trillion. Those estimates were outdated after the additional borrowings, the report said. Tokyo has issued ¥11.5 trillion in reconstruction bonds, lifted by ¥15 trillion its ceiling for short-term debt to fund foreign-exchange interventions, and boosted to ¥5 trillion a special government bond to compensate for damages linked to the crippled Fukushima Daiichi reactors, the report said.