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General Motors auto workers call strike in US

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DETROIT The United Auto Workers union called a nationwide strike against General Motors Sunday, with some 46,000 members set to walk off the job beginning at midnight amid an impasse in contract talks. The decision, which the Wall Street Journal described as the first major stoppage at GM in more than a decade, came a day after the manufacturer’s four-year ... Read More »

Can a tax rebate persuade Japan’s mom-and-pop stores to shift to cashless payments?

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When the consumption tax finally hits 10 percent next month, the government plans to seize the opportunity to dramatically accelerate Japan’s shift to cashless payments through a rebate program. But with Japan’s roughly 20 percent rate for cashless payments lagging other countries, is it possible to persuade mom-and-pop shops, backstreet pubs and cozy, decades-old coffee shops to invest in the ... Read More »

Yahoo Japan to end ivory trade on its websites

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TOKYO Yahoo Japan said it will end the trade of ivory on all its websites from November, after pressure from conservationists. The decision follows the internet company’s marketplace rivals Rakuten and Mercari adopting a ban in 2017, responding to international concerns that the Japanese domestic market could fuel smuggling through poor law enforcement. A 1989 ban prohibits international ivory trading ... Read More »

Trump-Abe trade deal helps U.S. farmers and staves off auto tariffs

U.S President Donald Trump and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, left, shake hands following a news conference at the G-7 summit in Biarritz, France, Sunday, Aug. 25, 2019, to announce that the U.S. and Japan have agreed in principle on a new trade agreement. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

The US-Japan trade deal, agreed in principle on the sidelines of the Group of Seven summit in France, spells out a big win for the U.S. that would slash Tokyo’s tariffs on American beef, pork and other farm products, and a small win for Japan as it delayed for now the threat of additional levies on Japanese auto exports to ... Read More »

Japan records goods trade deficit in July on weak exports to China

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Japan logged a goods trade deficit of ¥249.6 billion in July, weighed down by a decrease in exports to China amid Beijing’s ongoing trade conflict with Washington, government data showed Monday. The trade deficit followed a revised ¥589.6 billion surplus in June, according to a preliminary report by the Finance Ministry. In the reporting month, exports fell 1.6 percent from ... Read More »

Japan firms join exodus from China’s factories as tariffs bite

The Sony Corp. logo is seen on an NW-A55 Walkman digital audio player at the company's headquarters in Tokyo, Japan, on Tuesday, April 9, 2019.  Photographer: Kiyoshi Ota/Bloomberg

Top Japanese companies including Sony Corp., Ricoh Co. and Asics Corp. are orchestrating shifts in production away from China, joining manufacturers from other countries seeking to sidestep U.S. tariffs. Sony said last week that trade-war levies may cause it to raise prices or move production of PlayStation consoles, cameras and projectors outside of China, steps that could affect profit for ... Read More »

Two Japanese lizard smugglers get prison time in Australia

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Two Japanese men arrested last month for trying to smuggle lizards out of Australia have each been sentenced to five months in prison, according to the Australian Border Force. The men, identified by local media as Yusuke Imanishi, 52, and Daisuke Kobayashi, 28, were intercepted by customs officers at Perth Airport on June 5, at which time 13 bobtail lizards ... Read More »

Nissan to cut 12,500 jobs globally after Q1 profit drops 98.5%

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Nissan Motor Co said on Thursday it would slash 12,500 jobs globally by 2022 and cut output to rein in costs as it suffers from sluggish sales and rising costs and tries to recover from a scandal surrounding ousted Chairman Carlos Ghosn. Japan’s No. 2 automaker also posted a 98.5% plunge in first-quarter operating profit to 1.6 billion yen ($14.80 ... Read More »

Tokyo shares soar on US-China trade détente

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TOKYO — Tokyo shares soared on Monday after the United States and China agreed a ceasefire in their trade war that has damaged the global economy. The benchmark Nikkei 225 index rose 2.13 per cent, or 454.05 points, to 21,729.97, while the broader Topix index ended up 2.17 per cent, or 33.71 points, at 1,584.85. “The market enjoyed a major ... Read More »

US goods trade deficit with Japan shrinks 26.1% in May

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The US merchandise trade deficit with Japan shrank 26.1 percent in May from the previous month to $5.35 billion (¥576.8 billion), the Commerce Department said Wednesday. The deficit with China, meanwhile, expanded 12.2 percent to $30.20 billion, the department said. For the reporting month, Japan ranked as having the United States’ fourth-largest trade deficit after China, Mexico and Germany. U.S. ... Read More »

Inpex inks $20 billion deal on Abadi LNG project, the largest investment ever in Indonesia

The logo for Inpex Corp. is displayed at the company's headquarters in Tokyo, Japan, on Thursday, May 15, 2008. Photographer: ROBERT GILHOOLY/Bloomberg

Japan’s Inpex Corp. reached a new deal with Indonesia on the $20 billion Abadi liquefied natural gas project, a key step toward reviving work on the long-stalled venture that’s expected to be the biggest-ever investment in the Southeast Asian nation. A heads of agreement between the two includes an extension of the company’s contract to operate the Masela block by ... Read More »

Dollar almost unchanged around ¥108.30 in late Tokyo trading

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The dollar was almost flat around ¥108.30 in Tokyo trading late Thursday after overcoming its early weakness. At 5 p.m., the dollar stood at ¥108.34-35, against ¥108.31 at the same time Wednesday. The euro was at $1.1294, down from $1.339-1340, and at ¥122.37, down from ¥122.82. After moving around ¥108.40 in early trading, the dollar fell below ¥108.20 in midmorning ... Read More »

Japan business card app operator Sansan prices IPO at top of range, raises $360 million

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TOKYO: Japanese business card management company Sansan Inc priced its initial public offering (IPO) at the top of an indicative range on Friday, a regulatory filing showed, raising 38.9 billion yen ($360 million). Sansan said in the filing the IPO had been priced at 4,500 yen per share, at the top of a book-building range of 4,000-4,500 yen, valuing the ... Read More »

Coca-Cola to start using 100% recycled plastic bottles in Japan

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Coca-Cola (Japan) Co said it will start selling a beverage product next week using plastic bottles made entirely from recycled plastics. The move comes as beverage companies around the world are increasingly moving toward more sustainable packaging in a bid to protect the environment from plastic wastes. Coca-Cola will use the new plastic bottles when it launches its revamped Hajime ... Read More »

Japan business lobby urges sales tax hike to proceed as planned

FILE PHOTO : Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe speaks to media after phone talks with U.S. President Donald Trump (not pictured) after second North Korea-U.S. summit, at Abe's residence in Tokyo, Japan February 28, 2019. REUTERS/Issei Kato

TOKYO: The head of a Japanese business lobby said a planned sales tax hike should proceed in October to sustain the social security system for a rapidly ageing population, despite calls from elsewhere to postpone it given growing economic challenges. The intensifying Sino-U.S. trade war and slowing Chinese economy threaten to derail Japan’s export-reliant economy, keeping alive expectations that Prime ... Read More »

Dollar edges slightly higher to ¥109.57 in Tokyo

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The dollar on Monday crept up above ¥109.55 in lackluster Tokyo trading. At 5 p.m., the dollar stood at ¥109.57-57, up from ¥109.53-53 at the same time Friday. The euro was at $1.1196-1197, up from $1.1188-1188, and at ¥122.68-68, up from ¥122.54-55. The dollar firmed in late trading after fluctuating mostly around ¥109.45 amid a dearth of fresh trading incentives, ... Read More »

Japan exports fall again as Trump’s trade policy threatens economic outlook

FILE PHOTO: A man repairs a container at an industrial port in Tokyo, Japan, February 22, 2019. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-hoon/File Photo

Japanese exports contracted for the fifth month in April due to a slump in shipments of chip-making equipment to China, underlining the growing threat to the world’s third-biggest economy from a bruising Sino-U.S. trade war. Data also showed Japan’s trade surplus with the United States rose for a second month as auto exports accelerated, which could draw U.S. President Donald ... Read More »

Japan economy beats expectations of slowdown

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Japan’s economy unexpectedly grew in the three months to March, shrugging off forecasts for a contraction in the world’s third largest economy. The economy grew at an annualised 2.1% in the period, preliminary gross domestic product (GDP) data showed. That beat analyst expectations for a 0.2% contraction, as imports fell faster than exports. The data were closely watched for any ... Read More »

PHL, Japan working on new labor initiatives

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THE Philippines and Japan are now collaborating on new labor initiatives to further strengthen the ties between the two countries, the Japanese ambassador to the Philippines said. Japanese Ambassador to the Philippines Koji Haneda made the statement as the Philippines and Japan celebrated ties in the “Reiwa era” under newly ascended Emperor Naruhito on Tuesday. Haneda also said deepening people-to-people ... Read More »

Toshiba net profit up 26% in fiscal 2018 after selling chip unit

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Toshiba Corp. said Monday its group net profit in the year ended March rose 26 percent to a record ¥1.01 trillion after selling its prized chip unit in June. The technology conglomerate’s bottom line was boosted by the ¥2 trillion ($18 billion) sale of Toshiba Memory Corp. to an international consortium including US private equity firm Bain Capital LP, Apple ... Read More »