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  ISSUE 25/2013 12 November 2013   
Dear !*TITLE*! !*LASTNAME*!,

The cold weather starts reminding us of Christmas...
But unfortunately we have not been able to find a date suitable for all parties for the Christmas Luncheon we planned for early December at the Embassy. Would have been either too close to the Scandinavian Christmas Ball, or too close to the Christmas holidays.
Instead we have decided to try a new kind of event in cooperation with the other Nordic Chambers - a casual an informal After Work get-together with members from the other chambers on 20 November. Very simple - no registration needed, no participation fee (you just pay for what you eat and drink) and you could come any time between after 19:00.
Read more below!

With no Christmas Luncheon we, and you, could now focus on Scandinavian Christmas Ball held on Friday, 13 December. With one month and one day to go, it is time to make your plans before your calendar gets stuck with other year-end parties. Read more below.

This is also the last reminder for the Stora Enso Cup played on Friday, 22 November. If you would like to play and have not yet signed up, do so at latest on Friday! Details below.

Report from Luncheon Meeting with Mr. Matti Anttonen

At our luncheon meeting on Thursday, 7 November we had Mr. Matti Anttonen, Under-Secretary of State of the Department for External Economic Relations at the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland, as our guest speaker. The theme of Mr. Anttonen's presentation was "Finland as a Gateway to Russia".

In his presentation Mr. Anttonen pointed out a wide variety of areas and competences where Finland could act as a gateway to Russia for Japanese companies. He also mentioned the positive steps in the Russia-Japan relations through the 2+2 mechanism.

The event, held at Hotel Okura, ended with a lively Q&A session and was attended by 25 members and guests

For a report from the event, click link at right!

Wednesday, 20 November - Joint Nordic Event
Casual After Work at the Balcony

It's past Halloween and not yet Christmas, and we felt that we needed something to spice up the void in between, with some friendly and laid-back networking. We understand that it is a busy period for everyone, so instead of setting up a venue and taking registrations, we have opted for a casual After Work Evening together with our Nordic colleagues and friends from the chambers of Sweden, Denmark, Norway and Iceland.

FCCJ, together with our Nordic sister-chambers, invites all members to "After Work at the Balcony".

Date & Time:Wednesday, 20 November, 19.00-
Venue: Balcony Bar & Restaurant, Izumi Garden Tower 3F [MAP]
Cost:Free (pay at the bar for what you eat and drink)
Registration:No registration needed

Balcony Bar & Restaurant is conveniently located within the premises of Izumi Garden Tower, midways along the outside escalators. There is a cozy lounge-area inside, and if you are one of the people who thinks the temperature feels just like a Nordic summer, there are tables and chairs on the outside as well.

Please "pop-in" after work for some drinks and snacks. No fee, you just pay at the bar for what you eat and drink. Good news – Happy Hour until 20:00!

Hope to see many of your happy faces on 20 November!

Friday, 22 April - Sweden-Finland Golf Challenge
Stora Enso Cup - Autumn 2013

The 23rd Sweden-Finland Golf Challenge - the team competition between the SCCJ and FCCJ members - the Stora Enso Cup, is played on Friday, 22 November for a trophy donated by Stora Enso Japan K.K..

The venue is Taiheiyo Club Gotemba West, in Shizuoka prefecture, which has been the venue for the event four times in the past. First tee-off is at 9:24 and the cost is 17,500 yen, all included (play fee, caddie, lunch and party after play).

We have now 19 players signed up for the FCCJ team but we have still room for a few more. If you would like to participate and have not yet signed up, please do so before coming Friday!

For a flyer of the event, which also includes the access map and registration form, click link below.
Friday, 13 December - The Social Highlight of the Year for the Nordic Chambers

The social highlight of the year of the Nordic Chambers in Japan, the Scandinavian Christmas Ball, is this year held on Friday, 13 December at our regular venue, The Westin Tokyo Hotel.

This is the 21st event and the party committee is working on an exciting program with great food and drinks. Don't miss out on this opportunity to join one of the best parties in town for a very reasonable cost, taking into account what it includes!

Registration Open!
The registration for the party has now been opened. Please sign up soon to secure your seats! Sign-ups are on a first-come, first serve basis, although sponsors are guaranteed seats (Gold and Silver sponsors can reserve full tables).

Sponsor Recruiting
Currently we are also recruiting sponsors and advertisers for the party. To get maximum benefit and exposure for your contribution, sign up soon. Without the continuous support from a large number of companies and organizations, we could not have made this event as enjoyable as it has been throughout the years, for a reasonable cost of participation.

To sign-up as participant or sponsor, click link at right.

Helsinki Academic Male Choir Japan Tour 2014

Kauppakorkeakoulun Ylioppilaskunnan Laulajat (Helsinki Academic Male Choir - KYL in English) - a Finnish male voice choir from Helsinki that is about to have a concert tour in and around Japan on May 2014.

KYL was founded in 1949 and during its 64 years of existence, it has firmly established itself as one of the leading male voice choir in Finland. The choir has regularly toured both in Finland and around the world (Brazil 2002, China 2006, USA 2010). The latest tour in Japan took place back in the 80's - thus we feel the time is long due to revisit the land of the rising sun!

We are actively seeking partner companies for our concert tour. During our previous trips to other parts of the world we have always had good cooperation with both business and the governmental bodies and embassies of Finnish.

What KYL can offer to its partner companies in a nutshell:
- Musical experiences in the form of full choir concerts or quartet/small group performances
- Recordings
- Marketing visibility both in Finland and Japan
- Recruiting visibility at the Aalto University (background of the choir at the School of Economics)

Click link below for a presentation that has more specific information about KYL, the tour and the cooperation probabilities. For futher discussions, please contact Vesa Siltanen, KYL Japan Tour 2014 Cooperation Coordinator, email:
News from Finland

Over-50s at greater risk of redundancy

Trade unions are concerned about the growing trend for companies to lay off older workers. In the last year the number of employees aged over 50 who have been laid off has increased dramatically.

Finnish law does not require organisations to prioritise any part of their workforce when making cutbacks. In Sweden, "a last in, first out" rule applies, and Finnish unions are now looking to bring something similar to Finland to try and prevent unemployment rising among more experienced workers.

"Over the last year the number of over-50s made redundant has increased by 10 percent," says Katarina Murto of the blue collar trade union confederation SAK.

Some sectors have introduced recommendations on the order of departure as part of their agreement on terms and conditions. In practice, the employer usually decides who is for the chop, and the more experienced members of the team usually represent bigger cost savings.

Grin of the Week

The Decoy

One night, a police officer was stalking out a particularly rowdy bar for possible violations of the driving-under-the- influence laws. At closing time, he saw a fellow stumble out of the bar, trip on the curb, and try his keys on five different cars before he found his. Then, sat in the front seat fumbling around with his keys for several minutes. Everyone left the bar and drove off. Finally, he started his engine and began to pull away.

The police officer was waiting for him. He stopped the driver, read him his rights and administered the Breathalyzer test. The results showed a reading of 0.0. The puzzled officer demanded to know how that could be. The driver replied, "Tonight, I'm the Designated Decoy."

Note: this is just a joke, not a recommendation to help others break the law or cause bad behavior...
Best regards

Clas G. Bystedt
If you have any comments, rumors, gossip or inside information,
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This bulletin is published by the Finnish Chamber of Commerce in Japan (FCCJ) and distributed to over 650 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 64 corporate members, 12 individual and one special member.