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  ISSUE 14/2003

20 June, 2003  


"Tsuyu" (rainy) season is here, also according to the Meteorological Agency. Many of us feel that we've had an "on-off" tsuyu all Spring and early summer.

In this issue, there's several notices from the EBC, the European Business Community in Japan for those of my readers that are not (yet) familiar with the acronym. EBC is doing a great job as the trade policy arm of the fifteen European National Chambers of Commerce and Business Organisations in Japan. So I hope you read item 4 in this bulletin with a positive attitude...;-)

June Luncheon Meeting - last reminder

At the June luncheon meeting our guest speaker is Mr. Mr. Ryu Koriyama, Chairman & CEO, Aplix Corporation, and his theme is "T-Engine Will Achieve an Ubiquitous Society".

Date & Time:Tuesday, 17 June, 12:00-14:00
Place: Capitol Tokyu Hotel, Take Room, B2F [MAP]
Cost:7,000 yen (collected at the door)
Registration:by Friday 13 June

  T-Engine is becoming the hottest topic in Japan among all state-of-the-art technology players in the IT and software fields.

T-Engine Project, designed by Prof. Ken Sakamura of the University of Tokyo, pursues to develop an open, real-time operating system in order to achieve network-connectivity ubiquity.

Aplix is an innovator of Java™ solutions for next-generation consumer devices. Aplix Corporation is the global leader in deploying Java technology in mobile phones. Aplix's JBlend™ technology has enabled the deployment of more than 20 million Java-enabled mobile phones worldwide. (as of March 2003).

If you plan to attend and have not yet registered, pleae do so at latest tomorrow Friday by clicking link at right.
EBC HR Committee Seminar:
"Squaring the circle:
How to Manage the Corporate Pension Nexus in Japan?"

Guest Speaker: Mr. J.F. Estienne (General Manager of ProConsulting SARL

Ten years have past since the "Bubble" burst. Now, through persisting deflation, sustaining Corporate Pensions has become a serious challenge. Defined benefits (DB) are still running the show, meaning that employers are to fully compensate for any financial loss. New types of pension plans have been introduced, but these fall short of what is really needed.

The purpose of this presentation is to offer a clear understanding of the current pension problem, and to give advice on what kind of action can be taken to improve the corporate benefits situation in Japan.

Seminar details:
Date & Time:Wednesday 18 June, 18.30-20.30
Place: Europa House, (6th floor)   MAP
Delegation of the European Commission in Japan
Cost:2,500 yen at the door
EBC Tax Committee Seminar:
"Recent Developments in Japanese Corporate Taxation"

Topics including transfer pricing, corporate reorganisation, tax consolidation, factor-based tax, R&D, IT incentives and EU tax developments will be high-lighted by tax professionals and speakers from industry. METI will provide an update on Japan's policy to increase foreign direct investment. Join the EBC's Tax Committee in an open session exploring these issues. The seminar will provide the opportunity to raise questions. Documentation package will be provided.

Seminar details:
Date & Time:Thursday June 26, 17.00-19.00
Place: Europa House, (6th floor)   MAP
Delegation of the European Commission in Japan
Cost:5,000 yen at the door
Registration:by 23 June
EBC White Paper 2003

Thanks to the high quality of EBC's year 2002 white paper, "Challenges to Growth and Investment - The EBC Report on the Japanese Business Environment 2002", the EBC has become increasingly regarded as an authority on the Japanese business and investment environment. Accordingly, the white paper should have high priority among EBC's activities in 2003 as it has become our annual hallmark publication that serves as a foundation for interventions with the Japanese authorities and other organisations.

However, the EBC has limited operating funds and projects like the white paper must be conducted on a cost-recovery basis. In order to produce English and Japanese white papers simultaneously for release in early November, the EBC has decided to ask its members to sponsor the publication as sponsors in return for visible acknowledgment in the 2 volumes. The EBC will also take orders for the white papers at 5,000 yen for one set (1 English and 1 Japanese version) to assist with cost-recovery.

  • Blue-Star Sponsorship: 150,000 yen ad up (Company name on a 2-name page)
  • Special Sponsorship: 100,000 yen (Company name on a 10-name page)
  • Sponsorship: 50,000 yen (Company name on a 20-name page)

  • 5,000 yen per set: 1 English copy and 1 Japanese copy (including postage)

    If you would like to support the white paper as sponsor and/or would like to order copies please click links below for order forms.
    News from Finland

    Finland's exports and imports decline

    Finland's foreign trade continued to decline in April, reports the Finnish National Board of Customs. The exports declined by 6 % comparered to April 2002 and the imports by 8 %. The trade surplus was 930 mill. euro.
    The exports to the EU area declined by 3 % and to areas outside EU by 9 %. Imports from EU countires declined by 8 % and from areas outside EU by 7 %.
  • This time there's no Grin of the Week in this bulletin, out of respect for Mr. Tadashi Yano, a long time Finland friend, who passed away last Saturday at the age of 75. Mr. Yano was one of the best supporters of FCCJ, a very active member attending almost all of our events, and an influential member of our Board of Trustees.

    This active man will be dearly missed by all of us and hundreds of business friends in Japan and in Finland, his adopted second home country.

    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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    This bulletin is published by the Finnish Chamber of Commerce in Japan (FCCJ) and distributed to over 500 recipients 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 72 corporate members, 15 individual and one special member.