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Japanese incentives boost sales of green cars, TVs

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Taking up herewith Japanese Business Trend News through last week.
Japanese Business Trend will be read via these News.
Jun 13 Gov't eyes higher landing fees discount to support air carriers (AP)
 The transport ministry is planning to increase the discount on landing fees paid by airlines at most government-managed airports by 40 percent from the current 30 percent starting in July to assist air carriers hit by the economic slowdown, ministry sources said Friday.
Jun 13 Japanese incentives boost sales of green cars, TVs (BusinessWeek)
 Japanese are snatching up hybrid cars, solar panels and energy-efficient TVs, wooed by government incentives designed to battle a recession while conserving energy. Tax breaks and rebates on green cars have helped two hybrid vehicles, Toyota's Prius and Honda Motor Co.'s Insight, become the best-selling models in Japan in the last two months.
Jun 13 JAL set to extend unpaid leave (Japan Times)
 Japan Airlines Corp., Asia's largest airline by sales, is extending unpaid leave to cabin attendants and other staff until September as the biggest drop in overseas travel since 2003 pushes it to a second straight annual loss.
Jun 13 Companies opt to put flu pandemic precautions on cruise control (Japan Times)
 Companies are heeding the government's call to calmly take precautions against H1N1 swine flu after it was upgraded Thursday to a global pandemic by the World Health Organization.
Jun 13 Honda looks to raise ¥100 billion for loans (Japan Times)
 Honda Motor Co., the nation's second-largest carmaker, may raise about ¥100 billion by selling asset-backed securities or commercial paper to fund car loans as it expects demand to recover later this year.
Jun 12 Distressed in Japan (Forbes)
 In the midst of a Tokyo mini property boom in 2006, Japanese investment fund DaVinci Advisors inked what was then Asia's biggest real estate deal when it bought most of the Pacific Century Place tower, a high-rise built in 2001 next to Tokyo station. In return for a reported $1.7 billion it paid to Hong Kong's richest business tycoon, Li Ka-shing, it got the tower's office space -- not including the retail space at the bottom and the several floors occupied by the Four Seasons hotel at the top.
Jun 12 Real estate trusts to get helping hand (Yomiuri)
 Major real estate companies, financial institutions and the Development Bank of Japan (DBJ) will jointly launch an investment fund in August to help domestic real estate investment trusts (J-REITs) roiled by recent setbacks in the real estate market, The Yomiuri Shimbun learned Thursday.
Jun 11 Ritzy hotels slashing prices to fill rooms amid recession (Asahi)
 Luxury hotels are slashing rates amid the economic slump and appreciation of the yen, a strategy that could fill vacant rooms in the short term, but could have devastating longer-term effects. Many of these hotels opened recently in hopes of attracting an influx of foreign travelers. But when demand failed to reach expectations, the hotels started cutting prices. Now, some hotels are offering rooms at half the normal rates.
Jun 11 Japan mulls penalties to ensure transparent capital raisings (Bloomberg)
 Japan should enhance corporate governance standards by penalizing publicly listed companies that fail to be transparent when they raise capital, a government research committee said.
Jun 11 Prius hot, but at other models' expense? (Japan Times)
 Toyota Motor Corp.'s new Prius hybrid won more than 80,000 orders even before going on sale, prompting departing President Katsuaki Watanabe to call it the carmaker's "savior." Investors don't share his faith.
Jun 11 Animation studios seek rural inspiration (Japan Times)
 Some animation producers are exchanging the stress of Tokyo for the inspiration of rural scenery - and regional economies are benefiting. Tokyo-based ufotable Inc. opened a new studio on the fourth floor of a building along a river in the city of Tokushima in April, and nine new recruits have started on-the-job tracing training.
Jun 10 Gov't releases English guidebook on Japanese local cuisines (AP)
 The Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries on Tuesday released an English guidebook on local cuisines as part of efforts to promote tourism in Japan's countryside. Ten thousand copies of the guidebook titled "Japan's Tasty Secrets" will be given out at Narita, Chubu and Kansai international airports as well as at travel fairs hosted in Asia, Europe and the United States, the ministry said.
Jun 10 Toyota's second Indian plant to start by end-2010 (Reuters)
 The Indian unit of Japan's Toyota Motor Corp expects to start production of a compact car at its new plant by the end of 2010, with an initial capacity of 70,000 vehicles a year, a top official said on Tuesday.
Jun 10 Japanese company does thriving trade in 'fake friends' (telegraph.co.uk)
 Office Agents, a Tokyo-based company, rents out friends, work colleagues and even relatives to pad out the guest list. With unemployment rising and a growing number of Japanese in part time jobs, people rent fake bosses or colleagues.
Jun 10 Farm body goes bust with ¥1 billion debt (Japan Times)
 A government-affiliated agricultural body decided Tuesday to file for bankruptcy after allegedly misappropriating more than �600 million in capital funds, officials said. The Japan Rural Information System Association was set up in 1975 to improve information infrastructure in rural farm areas by providing cable television and other communications tools.
Jun 09 Japanese electronics bigwigs team up for U.S. smart grid (venturebeat.com)
 A dozen well-known Japanese electronic companies - Toshiba and Hitachi prime among them - have announced that they are teaming up to build a working smart grid in the U.S. by 2010. Construction will begin as soon as October as part of a New Mexico pilot program of 1,000 households.
Jun 09 Japan pearls in peril amid recession, competition (National Jeweler)
 Japan's akoya pearl industry, which began in the 1890s when Kokichi Mikimoto created the world's first cultured pearls, is facing collapse due to plunging sales and stiff competition from China.
Jun 09 How tuna conquered the world (independent.co.uk)
 It's Japan's fondness for the rarest and most exquisite tuna that has triggered the first big food crisis of 2009. Overfishing has left the Atlantic bluefin on the brink of extinction, and it will be wiped out in just three years, according to WWF. Yet only last week the Anglo-American restaurant chain Nobu refused to take it off the menu (while the Japanese industrial giant Mitsubishi has admitted freezing bluefin for future sale).
Jun 09 Narita airport -- worth long struggle to build? (Japan Times)
 Narita International Airport has played a key role in the aviation industry since it opened in 1978. But the history of Japan's main international airport has been overshadowed by a longtime political struggle over eminent domain, pitting the government against local farmers and their support groups, mainly on the left, in one of the major social quagmires of the postwar era.
Jun 08 'Land of the Rising Sun' promotes solar power (Taipei Times)
 Makers of solar cells are eager to make up for lost ground as they peg their hopes on the German market, where quality and reliability are key. Eager not to lose its long-held position at the leading edge of solar-cell technology to foreign competitors, Japan is promoting the further development of the technology, which is regarded as one of the strategically important industries of the future.
Jun 08 Turning Japanese--Again (Forbes)
 The Japanese remember the 1980s as a decade of Japan-bashing. Beefy American autoworkers laying into Toyota cars with sledgehammers; a stream of U.S. trade negotiators unnerved the Japanese by demanding that, yes, damn it, you will import Buicks, Chevrolets, Fords and Chryslers. During the Spandex and Pac-Man decade, it seemed to many folks, for a time, that the world was turning Japanese.
By J.S. on Jun 15, 2009



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