Category Archives: Japan

Japan Tagging on Tourist Tax to All Departing Persons


As of January 7, 2019, all those leaving Japan will be required to cough up an additional 1,000 yen (US$9). The money will be collected to improve tourism infrastructure in the country.

The levy, known as the International Tourist Tax, will be obligatory and all nationalities, regardless of the reason they are leaving the Japan. Tourists, businessmen, and any other traveler, as long as he or she is beyond 2 years old, will have the surcharge added to the price of their plane ticket.

Japanese authorities expect to raise about 50 billion yen. With the new money they plan to improve tourism infrastructure, including making the immigration process at the airport smoother, and encouraging visitors to go beyond the usual Tokyo and Kyoto stops during their stays in Japan.

The Asian democracy has been stepping up its marketing to the international tourist sector as a new source for its economic growth. In 2018 it is estimated that about 30 million foreigners visited Japan, the most ever. Many of the growth in tourism comes from Asian visitors, especially those arriving from China, South Korea and Taiwan. Japan is hoping that the coming Olympics will get the number of visitors to Japan up to 40 million by the year 2020.

Sony Sales Up After Chinese-Japanese Dispute Recedes Into Past

Nobuki Kurita

According to Sony Corp’s China head Nobuki Kurita, the giant consumer electronic company’s business in China is “more or less” back to normal levels after recent protests in China against Japan’s actions related to a group of disputed islands.

Last September saw a significant decrease in sales of Sony products in China as calls for a boycott of Sony reverberated in response to the nationalization of two islands in a group of islands under dispute in the East China Sea. In China these islands are called Diaoyu, and in Japan they are referred to as the Senkaku Islands. Japan nationalized these islands after they were purchased from private owners.

Because of the dispute relations between China and Japan were highly strained, adversely affecting sales of Japanese products in China. Kurita however believes that Japanese business in China should completely recover, showing a strong surge in the coming three years.

“My general impression is business conditions have more or less returned to the pre-crisis environment,” he told a media briefing at a Sony store in eastern Beijing.

Nomura’s Nagai Expects Overseas Profits by 2015

Koji Nagai of Nomura Holdings
Koji Nagai of Nomura Holdings

Chief Executive of Nomura Holdings Inc, Koji Nagai promises to bring back the company’s international division to profitability by March of 2015, according to an announcement Nagai made on Tuesday.

The direction the chief wishes to take will refocus its business model on the Asian market while responding more to the needs of their clients. Nomura is one of the top brokerage houses in Japan.

Due to the paradigm shift Nomura will be forced to set aside its other goal of becoming a global investment bank since the firm’s management will need to cut costs by approximately $1 billion. Nagai insisted however that Nomura intends to remain a global player.

“Our customer’s needs are strongly spreading outward and we need to stay global,” said Mr. Nagai.

Expectations are high for the company’s various regions to be bringing in profits by the fiscal year which ends in March of 2015. The company has a pre-tax goal of 50 billion yen ($639 million) at its offshore operations by March of 2016.

“We’ve been saying we want to become an investment bank centered on Asia, but I don’t think we’ll make huge profits there right away at all.”

Toyota Adds Sports Car to Lineup to Make Driving Fun Again

Hoping to put the fun back into Toyota cars, CEO Akio Toyoda popped out of a bright orange sports car which will be called the “86,” at the Fuji Speedway on Sunday.

Unusual Launch

In an unusual departure from the usual methodology of launching new car models, the 2-liter engine car, called the “86” (Hachi-roku) in Japan, or the GT86 in Europe, was sprung on the public at the foot of Mount Fuji instead of at the Tokyo Motor Show, which is due to open later in the week.

Toyota GT86

Toyota Motor Corporation unleashed its highly anticipated latest sports car model with the hope that its release will lead to a renaissance in Toyota’s development of a reputation as a producer of “fun” cars for the general market, which it hasn’t had in many years.

“We’ve made you wait a long time for this,” said Toyoda, dressed in a racing suit, addressing the crowd as he emerged from an orange 86. “At long last, here is a car for car lovers.”

Fun to Drive

Toyoda has seen his mission since he took the reins of the company in 2009 to lose Toyota’s boring image as a reliable, but not-too-exciting, car. Advertisements for Toyota have used slogans like “Fun to drive again,” and “Reborn,” asserting that the 86 is the vehicle to reach those goals.

Sidhwani Goes to Hollywood?

Updated Bollywood Marketing

It used to be that when Indian filmmakers wanted to promote one of their new movies, they would just get a “giant, hand-painted poster, a television or cinema trailer and the pulling power of a star actor.” These days much more is needed. And Ritesh Sidhwani, producer of the upcoming movie “Hrithik Roshan film Zindagi Milegi Na Dobara” (You Only Live Once), is not about to be left behind.

RS Phones Home

Some years ago it was ET phoning home. Now Ritesh Sidhwani is using a similar technique, but not in his movie; rather as a way of promoting it. Mobile phones are the new way of marketing movies and that is what Sidhwani is trying to do. This move is being implemented through a joint collaboration between Aircel (a leading mobile phone company in India) and Excel Entertainment film studio. The venture will result in two three-minute trailers which will be sent (for free) to the phone company’s 55 million subscribers. Since India is anyway the “world’s fastest-growing cellular market and the second largest after China,” (boasting 752.2m mobile phone subscribers at the end of 2010) this new marketing method seems like a slam dunk.

Sidhwani is already extremely hopeful that this new method will yield excellent results. He claims that by utilizing this technology he has been better able to engage in “more targeted marketing for films.” This is very helpful in today’s ever-increasingly competitive environment when there are so many diverse types of entertainment battling for their share of the market, which has decreased by 20 percent over the last three years. Sidhwani claimed that it is bound to work great since “mobile reach is much wider,” with everyone (especially the younger crowd) anyway watching Internet promos. There has been an increase of 22.6% year-on-year of Internet subscribers, with 10.99m having access to a broadband connection (an increase of 40% from 2010). It is predicted that a staggering 82% of India will be mobile-phone-clad in just three years’ time.

Bollywood “Likes” Facebook

As well as the mobile phone industry, it seems Bollywood is taking it all a step further. The movie is set to have a Facebook page. Clearly the industry is headed in “movie marketing to the next level.” It is honing in on where people are going in 2011 and responding extremely well to it. That has to be good for Bollywood business.