This paper considers the ‘direct payment system Japanese style’, which has been in force in Japan since fiscal year 2014 when the entire system was reorganised and fused with other current direct payment systems. Our analysis reveals that Japan’s direct payment system focuses on supporting the functioning of rural communities and has been relatively effective at strengthening intra-community ties. However, we conclude that it is difficult to foresee a promising future for the system unless the new policy framework is made more trustworthy and reliable and many additional policies are brought into force.


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