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  ISSUE 10/2002

14 MARCH, 2002  


This week we do not have much new to report about, mainly reminders, corrections and some additional information.
But next week we might have some exciting news form our General Assembly, who knows...;-)

Annual General Assembly - last reminder
General Assembly 2001

Date & Time:Tuesday, 19 March, 18.30 -21.00
Place: Embassy of Finland, Tokyo
Cost:Free one representative per member, others 7,000 yen
The General Assembly will be followed by a Buffet Reception (at 19:15), sponsored in part by  Nippon Finnpap Ltd.  and  AvestaPolarit Japan K.K. 
To register, click link at right at latest tomorrow (Friday 15 March). Note that if you are not the official representative of your company, nor an individual member, we will invoice the reception fee of 7,000 yen.
If you would like to check if you are on the list, click HERE.

Stora Enso Cup:
Sweden-Finland Golf Challenge
FCCJ and Swedish Chamber of Commerce & Industry in Japan have decided to organize bi-annual golf competitions between members of the two Chambers. We are invited to the SCCJ Spring Golf Cup, and we will invite the Swedish Chamber to our FCCJ Golf Cup in the Autumn. We will play for a cup donated by Stora Enso Japan K.K.
Here are the details for the first Golf Challenge:
Date & Time:Friday, 12 April
Place: Tamatsukuri Golf Club , Nejiki Course, Ibaraki Pref.  MAP 
Cost:ca. 18,000 yen (incl. play-fee, caddie, lunch and party fee)
Bus fee, ca. 4,000 yen, is excluded
Registrationby Friday, 22 March
As the number of participants is limited, please register as soon as possible by clicking link at right. Note that due to the rules of the competition, this invitation applies only to FCCJ members (incl. employees at member companies).
April Luncheon Meeting
Richard Collasse
Date & Time:Thursday, 25 April, 12.00 -14.00
Place: Capitol Tokyu Hoytel, Nikko Room
Cost:7,000 yen (collected at the door)
At the April Luncheon meeting we will again have an interesting speaker, from many points of view.
Mr. Richard Collasse is the new Chairman of the European Business Community (EBC), and he has lived in Japan for over 20 years and has contributed to the EBC for many years as Chairman of the EBC Cosmetics Committee and as a Member of the EBC Council.
And, as Mr. Collasse is the President of Chanel K.K. (since 1995), we will also get an insight in the luxury brand business in Japan.

EBC Luncheon: - change of date
Combating Terrorist Financing and Money Laundering:
Japanese Government Measures
Guest Speaker: Mr. Kiyotaka Sasaki, Director for International Financial Issues, International Organizations Division, International Bureau, Ministry of Finance
Date & Time:Friday, 29 March, 12:00-14:00
Place: Tokyo American Club, 4F
2-1-2, Azabudai, Minato-ku, Tokyo
Cost:5,500 yen
The Japanese Government has been making a sustained and diligent effort to cooperate with the global campaign against terrorist financing and money laundering. Mr. Sasaki will provide information on asset freezing of terrorist organizations under the Foreign Exchange Act as well as on-site inspections for compliance to the Act. He will brief on new legislation that MOF is drafting to further combat terrorist financing that will include more effective asset freezing.
Mr. Sasaki's presentation will be in English and to be followed by a Q&A session
For more about the luncheon, and registration form, click link at right.

DCCJ Luncheon (in cooperation with FCCJ, SCCJ and NBF):
Gerald Curtis: "Koizumi and the Politics of Reform"
Date & Time:Wednesday, 20 March, 12:00-14:00
Place: International House of Japan  MAP 
5-11-6 Roppongi, Minato-ku, Tokyo
Cost:6,000 yen
Registration: by Friday 15 March
Gerald L. Curtis is Burgess Professor of Political Science and former Director of the East Asian Institute at Columbia University. Currently on leave from Columbia University, he is Visiting Professor at the Graduate Institute for Policy Studies in Tokyo. He is the author of numerous books and articles in English and Japanese on Japan and on United States' relations with Japan and policy in East Asia. His most recent book, The Logic of Japanese Politics, draws on his intimate knowledge of the personalities that have dominated Japan's political landscape for the past thirty years.
For more about the luncheon, and registration form, click link at right.

News from Finland
Tax cuts are off
Much called-for new tax cuts will not take place this year after all, Kauppalehti reported. The overall burden will remain at 45 %, and not the 42.5 % suggested by finance minister Sauli Niinisto last September. Even his ministry last November had reckoned on a possible 43.6 %, but we can forget that now. Last year's rate (compared with GDP) was 45.6 %).

The FM blames the stalled economy but it is also finding it difficult to predict actual tax revenues come the end of the year and has decided to play safe. Extra corporate taxation will add most to the FM's coffers, though income tax will still fall this year somewhat. Finland's tax rate thus remains among the EU's highest.

The FM's cold shower accompanied its fresh forecast for growth this year, which is unchanged since November. GDP should rise by 1.6 %, accelerating in the final months to a rosier 3 % plus next year. Exports, which fell by 0.7 % last year, will expand by 1.3 % and imports by 1.4 %. Unemployment will rise to 9.4 % as inflation falls back to 1.5 %.
Grin of the Week
Foregone conclusion?
  1. The Japanese eat very little fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than the British or Americans.
  2. On the other hand, the French eat a lot of fat and also suffer fewer heart attacks than the British or Americans.
  3. The Japanese drink very little red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks than the British or Americans.
  4. The Italians drink excessive amounts of red wine and also suffer fewer heart attacks than the British or Americans.
Conclusion: Eat & drink what you like. It's speaking English that kills you.

Perhaps we should stick to Finnish or Japanese to live longer...
This was again a "contribution" from our friend in N.Y. Of course, he doesn't invent them by himself, just forwards them to me, but thanks anyhow!

Hope to see many of you at our General Assembly on Tuesday!

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 320 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.