Koizumi firm on reform in spite of gloom

JAPAN - Junichiro Koizumi, Japan's prime minister, yesterday, Wednesday, said he would not waver on economic structural reform despite evidence of increasing gloom in corporate boardrooms across Japan about the recession-swamped economy.

The pressure on Mr Koizumi heightened yesterday after the Bank of Japan's authoritative Tankan quarterly survey showed that business confidence sank for the fourth consecutive quarter to a near three-year low.

The closely watched diffusion index for big manufac