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  ISSUE 5/2003

28 February, 2003  


Before I go to our regular items, a couple of things. First, we have a new column on our web site, FCCJ President Timo Varhama's Point of View. Click here for the first edition!
Secondly, the web site for the Feel Finland 2003 project, co-ordinated by the Finnish Institute in Japan in co-operation with the Embassy of Finland, has just opened.
Please  click here and enjoy!

Toshikatsu Fukuma
Report from February Luncheon Meeting

The February Luncheon Meeting was held on Monday the 24th as a joint event with the other Nordic Chambers (DCCJ, SCCJ and NBF) at the International House of Japan in Roppongi. The guest speaker was Mr. Toshikatsu Fukuma, Member of the Policy Board of the Bank of Japan and the titkle of his presentation was 'Japanese Economy and Monetary Policy'. In all, 75 persons (27 from FCCJ) participated in this event.

In his presentation, Mr. Fukuma pointed out that the non-performing loans, estimated to 40 trillion yen as of September 2002, are still the biggest problem for the Japanese economy. He also pointed out that the banks should strengthen their capital base. Another problem for the economy is the struggle for funding for small and medium sized companies.

For more about the meeting, click link at right.
Annual General Assembly

The fifth Annual general Assembly of the FCCJ will be held as
The Annual General Assembly will be held at the Embassy of Finland on Monday, 31 March, 2003 at 16.30

The General Asembly will be followed by a reception at 18:00.
The Reception is free for one represenative per member, additional participans will be charged 7,000 yen.

The Reception is in part sponsored by Nippon Finnpap Ltd. and Stora Enso Japan K.K.
MP Marutei Tsurunen receives Finnish recognition

Finland's Minister of Foreign Trade, Mr. Jari Vilen has presented Member of the Japanese Upper House, Finnish-born Marutei Tsurunen with a diploma for his achievements promoting relations between Japan and Finland..

Ambassador Eero Salovaara awarded Mr. Tsurunen the diploma at a luncheon for visiting Undersecretary of State, Mr. Pekka Lintu at the Embassy on Tuesday. The luncheon was organized to exchange views and information between Mr. Lintu and the FCCJ. Seven representatives of the FCCJ attended.

At the luncheon it was also agreed that MP Tsurunen would be the guest speaker at the FCCJ luncheon on Monday 26 of May. Please mark this date in your calendar.

DIHKJ Seminar
A vision of Supply Chain Operations for the Mid-sized Companies in Japan
By: by Microsoft Navision Solution Center
Pacific Business Consulting, Inc.
The German Chamber of Commerce and Industry invites members of the other foreign chambers in Japan to a seminar with the above title.

Date & Time:Tuesday, 18 March , 18:00-21:00
After the meeting drinks and snacks will be served.
Place: ANA Hotel Tokyo, Banquet Room Glory [MAP]
2-4-1 Minami-Azabu, Minato-ku, Tokyo
Cost:2,000 yen (plus consumption tax)
Registration:by Friday 14 March

Main speaker Bob Berry, CEO and President of TSG Online, will investigate how the SME, both local Japanese companies and those international companies with presence in Japan, can compete with larger companies on equal footing. This seminar will go into topics such as "Why ERP Systems are the backbone of the future", "Collaborative Supply Chain Solutions" and the "Fit of CRM into the overall business strategy of the SME in Japan". He will investigate the differences and commonalities between such diverse operations as Retail and Service, Foreign and Domestic Manufactured Products and Automotive and High Tech.

For registration, please click link at right and write your name, company, address, tel. and fax numbers.
News from Finland
Bridgestone becomes biggest shareholder in Nokian Tyres

When Nokia Corporation on Monday sold its 2.000.000 Nokian Tyres shares to Bridgestone Europe NV/SA, Bridgestone became the largest owner of the Finnish tyre maker, with 18.9 % ownership. The transaction price was 39.17 euros per share.

According to Nokian Tyres Managing Director Kim Gran, "Bridgestone is the worlds largest manufacturer of winter tyres, and Nokian biggest in their market area. Also in the forestry sector Bridgestone is market leader in the USA, and Nokian in Europe. So there are substiantial synergy between the two companies."

Other major shareholders in Nokian Tyres are the Finnish insurers Ilmarinen with 5.35 % and Tapiola with 2.76 %.
Grin of the Week

Agressive Males

Well, this did not happen to me, because I don't have a cat... but it think it shows a good touch of "disarmament"...
One day at the veterinarian's office where I take my cat, a man and the receptionist were verbally abused.
After a few moments a technician came to her co-worker's defense. "Sir," she interjected, "do you know what happens to aggressive males in this office?"

Some additional comments to the News from Finland.
The tyres were one of the three cornerstones when the present Nokia Corporation was formed in 1967 by the merger of Nokia Company - the original paper-making business - with the Finnish Rubber Works and Finnish Cable Works.
The tyre and rubber division separated from Nokia Corporation in 1988 when Nokia Tyres was formed, with Nokia Corp. as the major shareholder. In 1995 the company was introduced on the Helsinki Stock Exchange and changed its name to Nokian Tyres (the possessive case of Nokia, the city we assume...to distinct it from the Nokia Corp., now focusing on telecommunications).
And, Nokia is of course not only a brand name, it's also the name of the small city just outside Tampere where it all begun. But you all knew this of course...

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 450 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.