NU Online News Service, July 26, 5:35 p.m. – The Japanese government plans to privatize the enormous Postal Life Insurance Welfare Corp. in 2003, according to Nihon Keizai Shimbun, a Japanese newspaper.

The Ministry of Public Management, Home Affairs, Posts and Telecommunications will be asking the Diet for permission to privatize the postal life system by putting it in the hands of a new, publicly traded company, the paper says.

The postal life insurance unit has the equivalent of $130 billion in assets and more than $1 trillion in life insurance coverage in force.

The full, Japanese text of the report can be found on the Nihon Keizai Web site, at http://www3.nikkei.co.jp/kensaku/kekka.cfm?id=2001072600962