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  ISSUE 19

11 September, 2001  

Dear !*SALUTATION*! !*LAST_NAME*!

When writing this in the middle of typhoon No. 15, one comes to think of two things; it's comfortable to have a home office and good that they invented the Internet so that this bulletin can be sent electronically, don't need to go to the post office, and you receive this absolutely dry!

September Luncheon Meeting
Our September luncheon meeting will be held on Friday 21 September at 12:00 at Capitol Tokyu Hotel.
Our guest speaker will then be Sami Hilvo, First Secretary (Press & Culture) at the Embassy of Finland.
Mr. Hilvo will give us an insight in a subject which should be of interest to all of us; "The Image of Finland in Japan". His main task at the Embassy is to promote the image and understanding of Finland in Japan. And the better he does his job, the more will it support the efforts of all companies dealing with Finnish products and services in Japan.
Sami's contacts with Japan dates back to 1984-85, when he was exchange student at Rikkyo High School.

Please note that we collect the participation fee of 7,000 yen at the door. To register, at latest by Wed. 19 September, click link to the right.

Reform in Japan: The EBC Perspective
Launch of the EBC Report on the Japanese Business Environment
The watchword of the new Koizumi government is 'reform'. But will the Koizumi reforms significantly change the business and investment environment for European companies operating in Japan?
Come to the launch of the EBC's Year 2001 report on the business and investment environment and hear what a panel of experts from the European Business Community in Japan (EBC) have to say about some of the reforms needed. Comments will also be made by His Excellency, Ambassador Ove Juul Jorgensen, Head of the Delegation of the European Commission in Japan, and Ms. Isabelle Hupperts, Chairperson of the EBC.

Venue:   Keidanren Kaikan, Diamond Room, 12th floor

  1-9-4 Otemachi, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo
  Location map
Time:     12.00-2.00 p.m., Monday, October 22, 2001
Fee:       10,000 yen at the door.
  Includes lunch, one copy each of the English and Japanese reports.
Register by Monday, 8 October by clicking link below.
Free Tickets for PC World Expo
Courtesy of PAGE Enterprises, Ltd., a Tokyo based Systems Integrator, and member of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce in Japan, we offer now 50 free tickets to the World PC Expo, which is to be held on September 19-22 at the Makuhari Messe Convention Center in Chiba.

If you would like to have a ticket (one per person), please click link below.

News from Finland
A cautious budget
Finance minister Sauli Niinistö told parliament there was absolutely no room for stimulus in the 2002 budget he laid before MPs last week. He said the tax concessions made earlier this year were already a fillip for the economy, coming at 'a brilliantly suitable time.' Kauppalehti said the FIM 205.6 billion budget was based on extremely cautious estimates of future government income so that even with the recession it should remain in surplus by the end of next year. The government won't manage its previous target of capping spending at 1999 levels; spending will be up by 4 % on this year's budget. It has also been forced to slow down on public sector debt repayments, with only FIM 4 billion set aside for this.

The budget should reduce the tax rate to its lowest level for 15 years, and numerous concessions are offered to companies. Even so, taxation will fall to only 44 % of GDP, compared with the EU average of less than 40 %.

For more news, click link to the right.

Did You Know?
Finland's Leading Export Countries
It might be somewhat surprising for many, that Japan is only No.16 if Finland's export countries are listed in order of importance. Below is a list compiled from the Finnish Board of Customs' statistics from the Jan-May period this year.

Pos.

Country
Export
(MFIM)
Share of
total exports

Change
1 Germany 15,523 13.0 + 4
2 United Kingdom 11,475 9.6 + 13
3 Sweden 10,693 9.0 - 3
4 USA 10,412 8.7 + 52
5 Russia 5,683 4.8 + 28
6 France 5,600 4.7 - 12
7 Netherlands 4,783 4.0 + 0
8 Italy 4,476 3.8 - 3
9 Spain 3,193 2.7 + 1
10 Belgium 3,052 2.6 + 13
10 Denmark 3,065 2.6 - 0
10 China 3,088 2.6 + 6
13 Norway 3,063 2.6 - 3
14 Estonia 2,672 2.2 - 30
15 Poland 2,206 1.9 + 20
16 Japan 2,195 1.8 + 3
Still some work to do for us...
One target would be to get within the top ten, were Japan used to be in until the mid-90's.

Have a nice week!

Best regards

Clas G. Bystedt

If you have any comments, rumors, gossip or inside information,
send it to:
fccj@gol.com

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ABOUT THIS NEWSLETTER
This bulletin is published by the Finnish Chamber of Commerce in Japan (FCCJ) and distributed to over 280 persons among its members and related organizations.
FCCJ was established in April 1999 to promote trade and economic exchange between Japan and Finland and has today 74 corporate members.