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Japan's Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) was formed in 1949 from the union of the Trade Agency and the Ministry of Commerce and Industry in an effort to curb postwar inflation and provide government leadership and assistance for the restoration of industrial productivity and employment. MITI held primary responsibility for formulating and implementing international trade policy, although it did so by seeking a consensus among interested parties, including the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Finance. MITI also coordinated trade policy, on issues affecting their interests, with the Economic Planning Agency, the Bank of Japan, and the ministries of agriculture, construction, forestry and fisheries, health and welfare, posts and telecommunications, and transportation.
As trade issues broadened in scope, these other ministries became more important in international negotiating, so that in the late 1980s MITI had less control in formulating international trade policy than it had had in the 1950s and 1960s. The prime minister, the National Diet (Japan's legislature), and the Fair Trade Commission also circumscribed MITI's operations.