The Ugly Face of Japan’s International Student Program

Japan has noticed a surge of foreign students since 2016. It has reached 277,331 or about 100,000 more compared to 2012. This is in line with the government’s goal to accommodate 300,000 foreign students by 2020 (which is very likely to be attained by end of this year). However, the other face of it is this: many foreign

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October 16, 2017
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A Recap on “Why Are Wages Not Rising Despite the Labor Shortage?”

(This post is a shortened version of University of Tokyo Professor Genda Yūji’s article published in Japan’s “Hello Work” employment offices reveals that the ratio of job offers to job seekers have been increasing since 2010. As of May this year, there are only 2 people who can fill up a job opening that requires three persons.

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October 13, 2017
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Omnichannel to Encourage In-store Shopping

Seems that the trend nowadays is to channel most retail marketing online. Conventional brick-and- mortar shops have incorporated online shopping to compete with online-only sellers like Amazon. However, some big retail stores are closing shops together with their hopes of complementing their physical stores with an online presence.   Retail store owners originally thought that an omnichannel (a

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October 11, 2017

Technical Internship Programs for Konbini Foreign Part-Timers

The convenience store industry in Japan will be offering the government-sponsored Technical Internship Program and Nihongo proficiency for its non-Japanese part-time employees. The Japan Franchise Association is also lobbying for the government to include convenience store management into it. Overall, the program aims to provide technical skills, technology and knowledge to people from developing countries who are working in companies

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October 9, 2017

More Japanese Children Gets Waitlisted 3 Years Now

Japan’s number of waitlisted children for day care enrollment has been increasing for three years in a row now. This year, the number grew by 2,528 from 26,081 recorded last April 2016 according to the Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry. This is due to several factors. One of which is more women joining the workforce. Another is the government’s

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October 6, 2017

From ‘Bad Tourists’ to Informed Ones: Japan Should Play Its Part

Japan’s tourism has been soaring year on year. Just last year, its foreign tourist numbers reached 24 million. This is still expected to rise to 40 million come 2020 for the Tokyo Summer Olympics and Paralympics.   The future looks good. However, some locals are already expressing their preference to keep the ‘bad tourists’ from entering Japan.

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October 4, 2017

Full-Time Worker Shortage in Japan up to 45%

A recent survey made by Teikoku Databank Ltd. released last August 24 showed that Japanese companies are facing a record-high 45% shortage of full-time workers. It is a huge increase from the July 2016 survey showing just 7.5% shortage.   Photo credit to:   Here is the breakdown of the shortage per sector:   69.7% shortage for

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October 2, 2017

Tokyo eyes basically banning indoor smoking at restaurants, hotels

The Tokyo metropolitan government plans to ban indoor smoking in facilities in preparation for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics. A corresponding punishment may take place once the rule is broken.   Photo credit to:   Tokyo governor Yuriko Koike said in a press conference last September 8, 2017 that “total indoor smoking ban is the basic trend

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September 29, 2017

Japan’s Tourism, Real Estate Hires More Asian Workers

Japan’s hotel operators and real estate firms are aggressively hiring foreign workers to capture overseas investors and buyers. The in-bound tourism and investment from wealthy foreign buyers have been booming and increasing.   TKP Corp., a Tokyo-based meeting room rental company, has been recruiting several Chinese and Taiwanese nationals every year offering the same compensation as that of their

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September 27, 2017

GM’s OnStar offers Wireless Auto Diagnostics

General Motors’ OnStar subsidiary has a new service that helps car owners know the condition of their vehicle. This is also used by car companies to prevent manufacturing defects in their future production.   The virtual auto mechanic service performs diagnostic tests and sends monthly reports to the owners. Data on the vehicle’s performance and critical parts such

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September 25, 2017