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  ISSUE 28/2014 18 December 2014  
Dear !*TITLE*! !*LASTNAME*!,

As the holiday season is closing in, this will be my last bulletin in 2014 and I would like to take this opportunity to thank our members and other readers of my bulletin for all your support and good cooperation this year and wish you:

Note that the FCCJ office will be closed from 22 December to 5 January.
I will read my mails occasionally during this time but cannot promise immediate response.

Our first event in 2015 is a Club Evening/Shinnenkai Party. We are still working on details, and venue, but it will be held on Tuesday, 21 or Wednesday, 22 January. Details will follow in my next bulletin, after the holidays. The second event in the new year has been fixed; a joint event with the Nordic Chambers - A Team Building Bowling Competition on Wednesday, 4 February. Read more below!

Our columnist has made some interesting comments and reflections on the election results in Japan, and some other issues in his Aoyama View column, titled "Snap Election Over, What's Ahead? Time for Xmas, New Year Holiday ".
Click banner at right for an interesting read!

A Successful 22nd Scandinavian Christmas Ball!

The social highlight of the year of the Nordic Chambers in Japan, the Scandinavian Joint Christmas Ball was held on Friday, 12 December 2014 at our regular venue, The Westin Tokyo Hotel in Ebisu, where the party has been held also in 2005-2009 and 2011-2013. The party was attended by 251 (59 from FCCJ) members and guests from the five Nordic Chambers of Commerce in Japan.

The ball started with a Lucie procession and greetings from the organizing committee, followed by Christmas songs by the ASIJ Choir, a much appreciated jazz music performance by the "The Jazzing Vikings", a group led by our old friend and MC on the evening, Mats Bruzeaus. The real Santa paid a visit to the Ball, assisting in the many lotteries.

The evening was ended off with a lot of dancing until midnight to the tunes of Brad and the Hitmen

For more about the ball, and a lot of images, click link at right!

Wednesday, 4 February - Joint Nordic Event organized by SCCJ
Team Building Bowling Competition

The Swedish Chamber (SCCJ) has kindly invited the other Nordic Chambers to one of their most popular annual events, the Team Building Bowling Competition held at Tokyo Port Bowl in Shibaura.

Professional Bowlers, beginners are equally most welcome! It is a team competition, each team consists of four player and each player play two games. Make your own team with your colleagues and business partners, spouses are very welcome!

Date & Time:Wednesday, 4 February, 19.00-22:00
Venue: Tokyo Port Bowl in Shibaura
1-13-10 Shibaura, Minato-ku (near JR Tamachi Station) [MAP]
Cost:6,000 yen/person (incl. 2 games play fee, party fee afterwards)
Registration:by Friday, 23 January

If you cannot make your own team you could also register individually and we will make a team for you.

Note: For award ceremony, your prize contribution will be much appreciated! (4 prizes a team)

FCCJ News - December 2014

The December issue of our printed newsletter "fccj news has been mailed to our members.

This issue contains an extensive recap awith a lot of photos from the 22nd Scandinavian Christmas Ball, reports Stora Enso Cup (FCCJ-SCCJ Golf Challenge) and the FCIJ Business Confirdence Survey. It also has an interesting article from our Vice President Hirokuni Yoshida in the "from the boardroom" column.

Please click link at right for a pdf version of the newsletter.
News from Finland

Finnish households take out fewer loans, invest more in stocks

Demand for personal loans has slumped in Finland this year. Within the next few month, more consumers in Finland will apply for home-repair loans, predict bankers.

Top bankers interviewed for a quarterly survey by the Federation of Finnish Financial Services say that demand for household loans has dipped in Finland this year. They predict that demand for home-renovation loans will pick up early next year. However they expect interest in other types of household loans to remain tepid.

The survey also indicates that Finns are investing more heavily in stocks and mutual funds, while the popularity of deposits has declined. Negligible interest rates are spurring consumers to seek earnings from other kinds of investments.

"During 2014, households have clearly asked for few loans than in recent years, but the willingness to investment, particularly in shares and funds, continues to grow," says Elina Salminen, an analyst at the federation. She points out that this year has been productive for investors. For instance, the OMX Helsinki stock index has risen by more than eight percent in the past year.

Sales of investment-linked savings insurance is also on the rise, while pension insurance is losing its appeal.

Grin of the Week

Facts about Reindeer Antlers

According to Mr. Poromies of the Lapland Department of Wildlife, while both male and female reindeer grow antlers in the summer each year, male reindeer drop their antlers at the beginning of winter, usually late November to mid-December. Female reindeer retain their antlers till after they give birth in the spring.

Therefore, according to every historical rendition depicting Santa's reindeer, every single one of them, from Rudolph to Blitzen - had to be a girl. We should have known. Only women would be able to drag a fat man in a red velvet suit all around the world in one night and not get lost!
Enjoy the holidays &
Best regards

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

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.