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  ISSUE 12/2003

30 May, 2003  


It's been a busy week with our monthly luncheon meeting on Monday and the Survey Luncheon, which was organized by FCCJ, on Wednesday. Read more about these below.
So at least I look forward to a relaxing weekend, with or without a typhoon (talking about the real thing, not those some of you think you have at home...).

FCIG Business Confidence Survey - Spring 2003
Companies confident about the opportunities in the Japanese market

The 3rd Foreign Chambers Information Group Business Confidence Survey, released on Wednesday 28 May at a joint Chambers' Luncheon, shows that even though the respondents do not foresee the Japanese economy improving in the coming 12 months, they continue to forecast positive results for their own businesses.

Foreign businesses still see Japan as a land of opportunity with 70% looking for further growth and 26% expecting to sustain their current level.

97 members from 13 chambers participated in the presentation luncheon, incl. 16 from FCCJ.

To read more about the survey, click link at right.
Marutei Tsurunen
Report from May Luncheon Meeting

Marutei Tsurunen attracted 65 participants to the May luncheon meeting organized in cooperation with the Swedish and Danish Chambers on Monday 26 May.

In his presentation, Mr. Tsurunen explained the ten main points in his efforts to change the Japanese politics, including changes in the election system, fund-raising methods for politicians, and allowing foreigners to vote in local elections.

Before Mr. Tsurunen had to rush back to the Diet, he answered several questions, including one that he is asked often from his voters - 'what would be the most significant change if his party would be in power'.
His reply was that the cozy relations between big business and politicians would be abolished.

For more about the event, click link at right.
June Luncheon Meeting

At the June luncheon meeting our guest speaker is Mr. Mr. Ryu Koriyama, Chairman & CEO, Aplix Corporation, and his theme is "T-Engine Will Achieve an Ubiquitous Society".

Date & Time:Tuesday, 17 June, 12:00-14:00
Place: Capitol Tokyu Hotel, Take Room, B2F [MAP]
Cost:7,000 yen (collected at the door)
Registration:by Friday 13 June

T-Engine is becoming the hottest topic in Japan among all state-of-the-art technology players in the IT and software fields.

T-Engine Project, designed by Prof. Ken Sakamura of the University of Tokyo, pursues to develop an open, real-time operating system in order to achieve network-connectivity ubiquity.

Aplix is an innovator of Java™ solutions for next-generation consumer devices. Aplix Corporation is the global leader in deploying Java technology in mobile phones. Aplix's JBlend™ technology has enabled the deployment of more than 20 million Java-enabled mobile phones worldwide. (as of March 2003).
FCCJ News No. 26

We are now preparing the June issue of our printed newsletter, FCCJ NEWS. This will include an extensive report from the Business Confidence Survey, member presentation, company news, meeting reports, and much more.

If you have news from your company (e.g. changes in contact information, new staff, etc.) that you would like to convey to our readers, please drop us a line. Photos are also welcome!
Dead-line is Friday 6 June.
Italian Chamber of Commerce in Japan Breakfast Meeting:
" Deflation, Debt Overhang and NPLs in Japan"

by Mr. Haruhiko Kuroda, Special Advisor to the Cabinet
In cooperation with the European Business Council, the ICCJ has the pleasure to invite the members ofall other European Chambers to this event.

Date & Time:Friday, 13 June, 08:30 - 10:00
Place: Capitol Tokyu Hotel, Take Room, B2F [MAP]
Cost:4,500 yen (collected at the door)
Registration:by Monday 2 June

Speaker's profile: Special Advisor to the Cabinet, Haruhiko Kuroda joined the Ministry of Finance in 1967. After successively filling important positions in the areas of Finance and Tax, Mr. Kuroda became Special Advisor to the Cabinet in March 2003 leaving the position of Vice Minister of Finance for International Affairs.

For more information and registration form, click link at right.
News from Finland

HEX jumps as Nokia soars ahead of update

Finnish shares ended sharply higher on Wednesday, led by Nokia as investors hope the firm's forthcoming mid-quarter update will not contain any disappointments, traders said. The HEX general index ended daytime trade 4.6 percent stronger at 5,565.23 points.

Brokers said the upbeat sentiment was following a strong opening on Wall Street as the U.S. dollar rose from record lows versus the euro currency, also easing fears that Finnish export-dependent firms could be hit hard by the exchange rate.

"Right now the dollar is at levels we could live with - if it doesn't fall from its current value it is a good thing for the market," said one broker.

Nokia surged 7.3 percent to 15.07 euros, outperforming its European sector peers.
Grin of the Week

How you made money

A young man asked an old rich man how he made his money.

The old guy fingered his worsted wool vest and said, "Well, son, it was 1932. The depth of the Great Depression. I was down to my last nickel.

"I invested that nickel in an apple. I spent the entire day polishing the apple and, at the end of the day, I sold the apple for ten cents.

"The next morning, I invested those ten cents in two apples. I spent the entire day polishing them and sold them at 5:00 pm for 20 cents. I continued this system for a month, by the end of which I'd accumulated a fortune of $1.37."

"And that's how you built an empire?" the boy asked.

"Heavens, no!" the man replied. "Then my wife's father died and left us two million dollars."

Have a nice and relaxing weekend and

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 460 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 72 corporate members.