Japan gov't planning to convene ordinary Diet session Jan. 24

The government and ruling parties are considering convening the annual 150-day regular Diet session on Jan. 24, a senior Liberal Democratic Party lawmaker said Monday.

The government will officially put the date to the steering committees of the upper and lower houses of the Diet once Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's January travel schedule is fixed.

If the regular session is convened Jan. 24, it will run to June 22 unless extended.

Abe's policy speech and three other government policy statements are expected on the first day of the session.

A question-and-answer session for Diet members in connection with Abe's speech is likely to be held after his return from a scheduled trip to India from Jan. 25.

The government is hoping to secure Diet passage of the fiscal 2013 supplementary budget at an early date and of the fiscal 2014 budget by the end of March.

The supplementary budget includes measures to cushion the impact of the consumption tax hike from next April.