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  ISSUE 27/2002

18 September, 2002  


It's been cool and wet for some days now but finally the sun broke through, at least here in Tokyo. Some sun seems to shine also on the relations between Japan and North-Korea after Mr. Koizumi's visit to Pyongyang yesterday. Might be this will give a boost to the confidence in him. Interesting to note that the business circles seems to appreciate his efforts on reform a bit higher now. Last week the chairman of Japan Busines Federation (and also chairman of Toyota Corp.), Mr. Hiroshi Okuda said that he gave Mr. Koizumi a "success rate" of 10-15% earlier, but that has now risen to 30-40%.

September Luncheon Meeting - last reminder
Kaj Forsell
At our next meeting we will have Mr. Kaj Forsell, President, Tekla K.K. as our guest speaker and the theme for his presentation is "Tekla, Bringing 3D Modeling to the Japanese Building and Construction Industry". Tekla is leading the way in infrastructure management software globally.

Luncheon details:
Date & Time:Friday 20 September, 12:00-14:00
Place: Capitol Tokyu Hotel, Nikko Room (B1F)
Cost:7,000 yen at the door
Registration:by Wednesday 18 September

On this occasion we will also get information on the Finland-Japan IT Symposium to be held on 1 November.
To register, at latest today (Wednesday), please click link at right.
Coming FCCJ Events
We have prepared an autumn full of interesting and exciting events.
In addition to these, there are several events organized by other organizations in Japan, which are open to our members. I will post these in this bulletin also as they are announced.
Here's the full list of the FCCJ events until the end of this year:
Date Event Venue
11 October
FCCJ & Stora Enso Golf Cup
(click above for more info)
Ibaraki G.C.
23 October
Luncheon Meeting
Speaker: Professor Timo Airaksinen
Chairman of the Japan Guild in Helsinki
Finnish Perspectives on Japan: An Evolving Picture
Capitol Tokyu Hotel
13 November
Business Confidence Survey Luncheon
Presentation of the results for the October survey
Capitol Tokyu Hotel
2 December
Joint Scandinavian Luncheon Meeting
Speaker: Mr. Keijo Suila, CEO of Finnair
Capitol Tokyu Hotel
13 December
Scandinavian Christmas PartyRoyal Park Hotel
18 December
Christmas Luncheon Meeting Embassy of Finland
EBC White Paper
The EBC's year 2001 white paper, "Supporting the Reform Process - The EBC Report on the Japanese Business Environment 2001", was produced thanks to the generous support of many members. Thanks to the high quality of this publication, the EBC is regarded as an authority on the Japanese business and investment environment.
The white paper should have the highest priority among EBC's activities this year. Both English and Japanese versions are ready for release at the launch November 22 at the Diamond Room of the Keidanren Hall from 12-2 p.m. (same location as last year).
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 the papers, EBC has decided also to take orders for the white papers at 5,000 yen for one set (1 English and 1 Japanese version).

  • 5,000 yen per set: 1 English copy and 1 Japanese copy (including postage)
    JMEC - Japan Market Entry Competition
    JMEC is a management-training program and competition for young business people wherein participants get hands-on experience in developing real business plans for actual companies.
    During the past eight years, JMEC has prepared business plans for 77 companies by teaming up with 408 young business professionals who pay to be part of the JMEC experience. They receive an excellent education and you receive an innovative business plan.
    JMEC is sponsored by the FCCJ in partnership with ten other foreign chambers of commerce in Japan. JMEC is also supported by the Delegation of the European Commission in Japan.

    Preparation for the 9th JMEC Program is underway and they are now accepting applications from Participants and Project Clients. This year they will accept a total 48 Participants and 8 Project Clients. The application deadlines are: September 30 for Participants and November 10th for Projects.
    For further information, click link at right.
    News from Finland
    New bank in Finland?
    Last week I wrote about speculations regarding Nordea. Now the Finnish business daily Kauppalehti provides some more information regarding this. It writes: "Last spring the large Dutch bank ABN Amro suggested to merge itself with Nordea. The merger was supported especially by the Finns and the Danes in the Nordea boardrooms. The merger fell due to the strong opposition from the Swedes."

    But there are some more concrete news about re-alignments in the Finnish financial sector.
    The Pohjola Financial Group and the savings banks are going to establish a new bank in Helsinki. The largest savings bank, Aktia, will probably stay outside.
    The savings banks expect to get a hold of the large customer base the insurance companies have and Pohjola hopes to get a large sales network for their insurance policies through the savings banks offices.
    There are 40 savings banks in Finland.
    Report from Japan Golf in Helsinki
    Annual Japan Golf Tournament (sponsored by Finnair, Embassy of Japan and Finnish Japanese Chamber of Commerce) was held on the 26th of August at Master Golf Club with 39 participants. Old "Tokyo Hands" simply gave an outstanding and impressive contribution to the event: The winner was Laurell Colless with 42 points and much ahead of her husband, former Finnish Ambassador to Tokyo, Mr. Pekka Lintu (today Under Secretary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs) who finished sixth. Other great performers included Rauno Sirola (5th), Timo Varhama (11th), Martti Varesmaa (27th) and Pasi Pölkki (28th). The Prize giving ceremony with buffet dinner (with Japanese delicacies) was hosted by H.E. Norimasa Hasegawa at his beautiful residence at Kuusisaari.
    (reported by Jukka Suomela)

    Grin of the Week
    REAL bargain - 50,000 yen Porsche
    A man was reading the paper when an ad caught his eye: Porsche - 50,000 yen! New!
    The man thought that it was very unusual to sell a Porsche for 50,000 yen, and he thought it might be a joke, but thought it was worth a shot. So he went to the lady's house and sure enough, she had an almost brand new Porsche.
    "Wow!" the man said. "Can I take it for a test drive?" Unlike what he expected, the man found that the car ran perfectly and took it back to the lady's house.
    "Why are you selling me this great Porsche for only 50,000 yen?"
    "My husband just ran off with his secretary, and he told me I could have the house and the furniture as long as I sold his Porsche and sent him the money."

    So guys, try to behave in the office.....
  • A last note, and reminder. Last week we initiated the Foreign Chamber's Compensation Survey. The survey is aimed at foreign affiliated and its purpose is to create benchmarks for the salary levels and compensation structures for locally hired staff at foreign companies in Japan.
    I sent out the survey to our foreign affiliated members last Monday but in case you have not received it (and belong to the above category), please mail me. Survey dead-line is 27 September and only those who participate will get the report free of charge.

    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 400 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 71 corporate members.