Email not displaying correctly? View it in your browser.
 home   events   biznews   about fccj   guidebook   contact us 
  ISSUE 11/2013 25 April 2013  
Dear !*TITLE*! !*LASTNAME*!,

Despite the many rainy days lately we enjoyed a dry and nice golfing day at the Stora Enso Cup played last Friday. To find out more, and who won, please check below.

The 23rd edition of the Foreign Chambers Business Confidence Survey has also been completed and the results are now available. Some interesting findings with very positive views on the Japanese economy and some interesting opinions in the additional questions regarding "Abenomics" and the Free Trade Agreements. Please read more below!

This week we have a new contribution from our Japan veteran in Finnish business in his column Aoyama View, this time titled "Missiles, Quakes and Wawes – Financial Ones ".
Click banner at right for an interesting read!

The 23rd Foreign Chambers Business Confidence Survey
"Economy Steaming Ahead – But Does Business Follow?"

The Foreign Chambers in Japan (FCIJ) has been conducting Business Confidence surveys online twice a year since 2002 among foreign-affiliated companies in Japan. This, the 23rd, survey was conducted between 10 and 19 April 2013, and received 293 valid responses from members of 19 foreign chambers of commerce and business organizations.
The survey was run and processed on behalf of all the chambers by the FCCJ.

As expected, the views on the Japanese economy showed a significant improvement from the previous survey (in October 2012). The economy for the next 6 months is expected to grow significantly - the index (on a scale from +2 to -2) was now +1.00 (compared to -0.01 in October), and looking 12 months ahead, the companies see still a slightly higher growth rate, index was +1.06, much higher than the +0.19 in the previous survey. Only once since the survey was started in 2002 the index has been higher, in October 2005 (+1.12).

The positive views on the economy did however not fully reflect in the reported and projected performance of the companies, most likely due to the weakening of the yen.

This time the survey included two alternating questions, the first regarding “Abenomics”, the second related to the Free-Trade agreements.

For the full report, click link at right!

Left Stora Enso's Atsushi Yamazaki (right) presents the trophy to Sakari Romu (no.1), Hiroaki Sugawara (individual winner), Sakari Romu (best gross) and Hirokuni Yoshida (FCCJ Vice President).
Friday, 19 April - SCCJ-FCCJ Golf Challenge
FCCJ retains the Stora Enso Cup!

The 22th Stora Enso Cup, the golf challenge between the Swedish and Finnish Chambers was played on Friday, 19 April at Golf Club Narita Hitree in Chiba Prefecture. The event was played in quite nice spring weather, mostly cloudy and a bit chilly in the morning, but warm enough for a fine day of golf on a colorful and beautiful course.

41 players participated in the competition (26 from FCCJ, 15 from SCCJ), including three guests. Notable was that 27 (65%) of the players were Japanese.

The Finnish Chamber came on now top for the third time in a row. This FCCJ beat the Swedish Chamber by a fairly large margin, 3.7 strokes on average per player, 79.4 versus 83.1 as average for the best 80% in each team. The FCCJ now has four more wins than the SCCJ, 13 against 9.

The best golfer on the day was Hiroaki Sugawara (FCCJ) who was Best Net (68), Sakari Romu (FCCJ) was Best Gross (84).

For a full report from the event, click link at right.

Thursday, 16 May - FCCJ Luncheon Meeting
Timo Varhama, President, UPM-Kymmene Japan KK

Our next regular luncheon meeting will be held on Thursday, 16 May when we have Mr. Timo Varhama, President of UPM-Kymmene Japan KK as our speaker.

Mr. Varhama will retire at the end of May after a long and distinguished career at Finnpap, Nippon Finnpap and UPM-Kymmene Japan. He also served as President of FCCJ from 2003 to 2005 and is currently a member of our Board of Trustees.

This is a good opportunity for all members to thank him for his contribution to our chamber and to hear the experiences and opinions of our "senior statesman".

Date & Time:Thursday, 16 May , 12.00-14:00
Venue: Grand Hyatt Tokyo, Drawing Room 2F [MAP]
Cost:Members 6,000 yen, Guests 8,000 yen
Registration:by Friday, 10 May

About Timo Varhama
Timo Varhama was born in Helsinki 1948 but spent his school years in Lahti. After graduating from Helsinki School of Economics he joined Finnpap, the export joint sales organization of Finnish paper companies.

Next 15 years he spent in paper sales around the world including permanent stints in Australia and Norway as well as in management in Helsinki head office, last 3 years as Sales Director.

He came to Japan first time in 1987 as Vice President of Nippon Finnpap Ltd., then moved to Finnpap Australia as Vice Managing Director in 1992.

In 1997 Timo was called back to Japan as President of Nippon Finnpap, which then changed to UPM Kymmene Japan KK, a 100% owned subsidiary of UPM Corporation covering all UPM products, in 2004.

If you would like to attend, please click link below. We collect the luncheon fee at the hotel. Note that we have to invoice the lunch fee for cancellations after 13:00 on Monday, 13 May and "no-shows". If you require vegetarian food, please note this in your registrations.

Volvo Expat Sales

News from Finland

Industry speculates on new Nokia handset
The technology bloggers and writers were abuzz Tuesday on speculation that Finnish phone maker Nokia will unveil a new and inexpensive handset featuring a QWERTY keyboard. Nokia remained mum on the subject.

While they expect Finnish phone maker Nokia to reveal a new mobile phone Wednesday, Mashable gurus don’t believe that the model will join the Lumia line-up, nor that it will even be a smartphone. They are putting their money on a new low-cost Symbian-based Asha phone.

The blogosphere musings were triggered by comments in “Conversations”, the official Nokia blog, which mentioned that the company would launch “something new” Wednesday morning. The comment was accompanied by an image showing what appears to be the corner of a phone display and keyboard.

Another digital technology magazine, Engagdet, engaged in similar speculation Tuesday, saying that the timing of the launch suggests that the new offering is aimed at European or Asian markets.

Nokia has not offered an official comment on the rumours.

Grin of the Week

Not as funny as you think?

The boss returned from lunch in a good mood and called the whole staff in to listen to a couple of jokes he had picked up. Everybody, but one girl laughed uproariously.
"What's the matter?" grumbled the boss. "Haven't you got a sense of humor?"

"I don't have to laugh," she replied. "I'm leaving on Friday."
Wish all my readers in Japan a great and relaxing Golden Week and
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.