Reuters reports that former central bank executive Eiji Maeda said that the Bank of Japan may be able to start debating ways to phase out its extraordinary stimulus programme, such as by ditching negative interest rates, in 2023.
Discussions on abandoning negative rates would only emerge if Japan's economy returns to post-pandemic levels and inflation perks up near 1%, said Maeda, who as BOJ executive director oversaw its policy drafting until May 2020.
And if the central bank raises rates, it will only move the short-term rate target to around 0.0%-0.5% in what will be a modest reversal of crisis-mode policies rather than the start of a full-fledged rate-hike cycle.
"If the BOJ is lucky, debate (on raising rates) could begin from around 2023," Maeda told Reuters in an interview.
"But this won't be policy normalisation. It will merely be a shift away from an extraordinary stimulus towards a more sustainable monetary easing," he said.
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