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  ISSUE 22/2018 18 September 2018 
Dear !*TITLE*! !*LASTNAME*!,

Even after over 30 years here, the Japanese public holidays still confuses me sometimes. Even outside Japan, many know about the Golden Week, a string of holidays from end of April to early May. But since 2009 we also have a Silver Week, due to the fact that the Respect for the Aged Day is on third Monday of September (yesterday) and Autumnal Equinox Day, usually September 23, but as it is a Sunday, in the Japanese tradition it was moved to next Monday. If lucky, there is another holiday between these "Kokumin no kyujitsu" (Citizens's Holiday), the day in between the two other holidays (or weekend), so that you get a five day break. But this is rather rare, next time happens in 2026. So this year the Silver Week is not that "glamorous", just two consecutive Monday's off.

As for Golden Week in 2019, due to the abdication of current Emperor on 30 April and enthronement of the new 1 May (both holidays), the government has proposed that the Golden Week holidays be consolidated into a special ten day block lasting from Sat. 27 April to Mon. 6 May.
So if you plan to travel then, better start booking tickets already now!

Our next event is Mercedes-Benz - Cole Haan Cup on Friday, 5 October, but unfortunately this is already fully booked, partly because FCCJ has 23 players out of 80 in the European team, so we are by some margin the chamber with most participants. To know more about the event, go here!

On Tuesday, 23 October the traditional European Joint Chamber Networking Party is held. Event details below. Later in October we are planning to have a Joint Nordic Young Professionals event , details about that in my next bulletin!

Our "Aoyama View" columnist used the long weekend efficiently to make a new contribution, this time titled "From Osaka typhoon to Osaka fever - dark side and bright side of Japan".

Click banner at right to find out why Osaka can be seen both from a dark and a bright side...

Tuesday, 23 October - European Chamber Event organized by the French Chamber

The French Chamber of Commerce is glad to announce the next edition of the traditional European Joint Chamber Networking Party, held this year on Tuesday, October 23 at the Shangri-La Hotel.

Come and join more than 200 guests at the must-attend event of the year for networking with business people from over 10 European Chambers of commerce. An evening of networking with fine food and free-flow wine awaits you. A free raffle will be organized and you just may be the winner of one of the beautiful prizes offered by the chambers member companies.

 
Date & Time:Thursday, 26 October, 19.00-21:00
Venue: Shangri-La Hotel, "Ballroom" [MAP]
Cost:8,000 yen for members, non-members 12,000 yen
Registration:by Monday, 15 October
(Cancellation after this date or no show will be fully charged)

Note that we collect the fee at the venue and provide you with a receipt. Cancellation after registration dead-line or no-shows will be fully charged.

To register, please click link at right!
Wednesday, 26 September - EU Delegation Seminar
Geographical Indications and the EU-Japan EPA

The EU Delegation to Japan invites you to attend a seminar on geographical indications (GIs) in the EU-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement which will be held at the EU Delegation on Wednesday, 26 September from 15:00 to 18:00.

For Japan, the EU-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement is the first trade agreement to include geographic indications (GIs) for distinctive and high-quality food and drinks. The protection of GI names is an area where Japan and the EU share common interests and similar concerns. The agreement on GIs is therefore designed to help ensure the protection and enforcement of intellectual property rights, while increasing bilateral trade, supporting rural economies and protecting local brand names and jobs.

Famous European GIs include Champagne, Parma ham and Port wine. In Japan e.g. Kobe beef and Yobari melon are registered GIs. Finland has only a few, e.g. Kainuun rönttönen (berry pie from Kainuu) and Puruveden muikku (vendace from Puruvesi).

For full details of the seminar and registration form, click link at right!
Service provided by the EU-Japan Centre for Industrial Cooperation


In view of the forthcoming entry into force of the EU-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA), the EU-Japan Centre for Industrial Cooperation has launched an EPA Helpdesk to raise awareness of the opportunities this agreement offers, to help EU SMEs take advantage of them, and guide them in their search for relevant information.

The "EPA Helpdesk" will provide up-to-date information and recommendations on the potential benefits the EU-Japan EPA will offer EU SMEs. Every month the EU-Japan Centre will organise a webinar and publish an information pack composed of a Factsheet and Guidelines covering a specific topic or sector.

Would you be interest in being regularly kept informed of these forthcoming EPA-related publications and webinars?

The first webinar of the series will be covering gRules of Originh and be organised on Tuesday, 25 September. Registration deadline: 24/09/2018

For more, click link at right!
News from Finland

Think tank forecasts slower growth for Finland

Finnish GDP growth will slow next year to 2.4 percent after hitting 2.6 percent this year, forecasts the PTT Economic research institute.

PTT says employment has increased during the current upswing, with some 75,000 more people in work in July than a year earlier. That growth is set to continue next year, with another 30,000 people in work by July 2019, according to PTT.

That would bring the unemployment rate down to seven percent, but PTT says further reductions may be difficult as it's harder to get people back into work if they have been out of the labour force for long periods.

Another concern is reduced spending on research and development, which PTT says could make productivity gains harder to achieve.

PTT also expressed concern over the potential for slower global economic growth due to trade wars and tariffs, especially between the United States and China.

PTT's forecast decline in growth is less steep than others, with Nordea predicting a one percentage point drop in economic growth in 2019.
Grin of the Week

Better offer

During the wedding rehearsal, the groom approached the pastor with an unusual offer.

"Look, I'll give you $100 if you'll change the wedding vows. When you get to me and the part where I'm to promise to 'love, honor and obey' and 'forsaking all others, be faithful to her forever,' I'd appreciate it if you'd just leave that part out." He passed the minister a $100 bill and walked away satisfied.

It is now the day of the wedding, and the bride and groom have moved to that part of the ceremony where the vows are exchanged. When it comes time for the groom's vows, the pastor looks the young man in the eye and says, "Will you promise to obey her every command and wish, serve her breakfast in bed every morning and swear eternally before God and your lovely wife that you will not ever even look at another woman, as long as you both shall live?"

The groom gulped and looked around, and said in a tiny voice, "I do." Then, he leaned toward the pastor and hissed, "I thought we had a deal."

The pastor put the $100 bill into his hand and whispered back, "She made me a much better offer."
Best regards

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

ABOUT THIS BULLETIN
This bulletin is published by the Finnish Chamber of Commerce in Japan (FCCJ) and distributed to over 700 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 62 corporate members, 19 individual and two special members.