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  ISSUE 22/2015 25 September 2015  
Dear !*TITLE*! !*LASTNAME*!,

Our next own event is a Club Evening with a theme - "Working for a Finnish Company" on Tuesday, 20 October at the Scandinavian Center in Akasaka. We are still working on the program and I will provide details in my next bulletin, but mark the date in your calendar now!

The registration for the Scandinavian Christmas Ball, held on Wednesday, 16 December at Westin Tokyo Hotel, is now open, click banner below to find out more!
The FCCJ Member Survey 2015 is ongoing. The feedback will help us stay on track and ensure that we are delivering value to our members. If you have not yet participated in the survey click HERE. The Japanese version is HERE.

The Mercedes-Benz - Cole Haan Cup on Friday, 9 October is now fully booked. But in case you missed out on this, there's is another opportunity for our golfers, Stora Enso Cup - the team competition between the Finnish and Swedish Chambers - played on Friday, 13 November at Taiheiyo Club Gotemba West. Mark this in your calendar. To know more, click HERE.

This week we have a new edition of Aoyama View, this time titled: "Big Problems, Big Talk and Big Figures - Each in Their Own Way".

Click banner at right for great review of recent, and coming global events, as well as some in Japan!

Report from the FCCJ Luncheon Meeting on Tuesday, 15 September

On Tuesday, 15 September we had Mr. Hiroshi Kishino, President, Amer Sports Japan, Inc., as speaker at our luncheon meeting.

Even though Amer Sports might not be the most well-known Finnish multinational company, the brands it owns, including Salomon, Wilson, Atomic, Arc'teryx, Mavic, Suunto and Precor, definitely are.

In his presentation Mr. Kishino first gave a background to Amer Sports globally and in Japan, presented their brands, their operations in Japan (staff of 240, 14 bill. yen sales) and strategies and targets for the future. As many other companies, Also Amer Sports expects a growth from Tokyo 2020 Olympics and their target is to increase their sales to 20 bill. yen.

After Mr. Kishino's presentation, Timo Varhama presented the JMEC program and Merja Karppinen, Director of The Finnish Institute in Japan explained about their activities and coming events.

For more about the event, attended by 27 members and guests, click link at right!

FCCJ will organize a special tour Friday, 6 to Saturday, 7 November to Onomochi city in Hiroshima prefecture.

For Japanese, Onomichi is perhaps best known for a famous 1950's movie - Tokyo Story. But it has also much else, i.e. a mega solar farm (which is the main reason for the tour) run by one of our member companies, many shipyards, etc.

Departure from Tokyo by Shinkansen will be in the morning of Friday, 6 November. The program on Friday will include visits to the Solar Farm, a Fish farm and dockyard, and also a lunch with Onomichi Mayor Hiratani and a networking reception with Onomichi Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

On Saturday we provide two options - either a full day fishing tour or a sight-seeing tour in and around Onomichi.

For more information and to sign up, please click link at right. Note that the tour is limited to 12 participants and we have three slots left. So register now if you would like to join!
FCCJ is now on Facebook

We have (finally...) made a proper Facebook page and we hope this would further increase the interaction between our members and others interested in the business and economic exchange between Finland and Japan.

We have currently three editors, but if you would like to contribute to the content, please contact me.

To go to the Facebook page, click image at right!

Doing Business in Japan the JMEC Way!
JMEC Early Bird Special

The Japan Market Expansion Competition (JMEC) is a business training program in Tokyo centered on a business plan writing competition. The dual objectives of the program are to strengthen the skills of up-and-coming executives, while assisting foreign companies doing business in Japan. JMEC is supported by 18 Chambers of Commerce in Japan.

JMEC 22 will start November 7th, 2015. Application due October 15th. Cost: JPY125,000.

Apply by September 30th for the Early-bird Cost: JPY100,000.

Attend an information session on September 30 or Oct. 8th to find out more about the program.

Register for an upcoming Information Session HERE!

News from Finland

Union federation SAK proposes salary freeze for 2017

Finland's largest trade union federation SAK has proposed freezing wages in 2017, and pegging possible increases for 2018 against wages in the distressed export sector as a counterproposal to government's plans to bring legislation to effectively cut workers' pay. The union also says it's ready to increase employee contributions to unemployment benefit funds but only if government agrees to abandon its wage-slashing plan.

Following a meeting on Thursday board members of the two-million-member union federation SAK proposed freezing workers' salaries in 2017. They also suggested pegging possible wage hikes in 2018 to Finland's export sector - which is currently struggling to get back on its feet - as a means of ensuring moderate increases.

The measure was part of a raft of measures intended as a counterproposal to government's plan announced two weeks ago to axe premiums paid for work done on Sundays, overtime and two public holidays. The government also proposed docking workers' pay for the first day of sick leave and reducing compensation for another eight days to 80 percent full pay.

SAK chair Lauri Lyly said the wage proposal would take Finland closer to the Swedish model but cautioned that businesses should not use the gains from a lower wage bill to pay fatter dividends.

Grin of the Week

Poor Old Fred

Old Fred's hospital bed is surrounded by well-wishers, but it doesn't look good. Suddenly, he motions frantically to the pastor for something to write on. The pastor lovingly hands him a pen and a piece of paper, and Fred uses his last bit of energy to scribble a note, then dies. The pastor thinks it best not to look at the note right away, so he places it in his jacket pocket.

At Fred's funeral, as the pastor is finishing his eulogy, he realizes he's wearing the jacket he was wearing when Fred died. "Fred handed me a note just before he died," he says. "I haven't looked at it, but knowing Fred, I'm sure there's a word of inspiration in it for us all."

Opening the note, he reads aloud, "Help! You're standing on my oxygen tube!"
Have a great weekend &
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 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 64 corporate members, 12 individual and one special member.