Beset by risks, Japan seeks boost from stimulus

TOKYO (AP) — Japan’s newly installed prime minister Shinzo Abe has delivered a 20 trillion yen ($224 billion) stimulus package of public works and other projects aimed at revitalizing the sagging economy and providing support for struggling manufacturers.

Abe said the measures announced Friday are intended to spur a 2 percent rise in real economic growth and create some 600,000 jobs.

But critics fear the stimulus will add to Japan’s massive public debt while fueling wasteful spending on unneeded construction projects.

Japan’s economy fell back into recession last fall as growth dragged due to weakening investment and the blow to exports from weak demand in Europe and China. Sales of Japanese cars and other products in China were hammered by anti-Japanese riots sparked by a territorial dispute that has yet to be resolved.

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