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Tuesday, 18 February 2014 09:16

Japan National Report Featured

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Japan National Report

Japan history

When studying the history of Japan, it encompasses the islands of Japan and the people of Japan. The first human to arrive in Japan was in 35 000 BC. A large part of Japan is mountainous which leaves a 17% of the surface area available for agriculture. The main line of business for Japanese is products of the sea such as shellfish, fish, and edible seaweed. Yayoi is a culture group that existed between 300 and 100 BC which is an agricultural group that was growing rice fields like the Chinese. During this time, Shinto was the main religion in Japan, which had no founder, moral code, or inspired scriptures (Norman, & Woods 2000).

Buddhism was introduced to Japanese in 522 BC and scholars were sent to Japan as a means of thanks from the king of Paikche in Korea. During 607, Horyuji monastery was built, and in the monastery his own residence was built and also a chapel, known as the hall of dreams (Kingston, 2012). The capital of Japan was fixed in 710 for the first time, and it was located in Nara. It was the center of Buddhist, religion, culture, and art. In 1550, the political power was subdivided in several hundred local units that were controlled by local daimyo, which were the lords each with their own force of samurai warriors. In 1600, Tokugawa leyasu came to power, and he gave land to his supporters and set up his federal government at Edo. His period was successful and peaceful, and Japan did terminate the Christian missions and also cut off all contacts with the outside world.

The Meiji period started in 1860s and the national leadership ended feudalism, and it transformed an isolated underdeveloped island country into a world, power which closely followed the western models. Japan did control the coast and some major cities, and it set up puppet regimes, but it was not able to defeat china. The attack on the Pearl Harbor resulted to war with US and its allies. United States did occupy Japan until, 1952 and from 1955, Japan enjoyed a very high economic growth rate and it became a world economic powerhouse in engineering, electronics, and automobiles (Kingston, 2012). Since the year 1990, economic stagnation has remained a major issue with the tsunami and earthquake in 2011 which caused a massive dislocation and loss of the nuclear power supply.

Political climate

Politics in Japan is normally conducted in a framework of a parliamentary representative democratic monarchy in which the prime minister of Japan is the head of the government and also the head of the cabinet which tend to direct the executive branch. The legislative power is normally vested on the Diet that consists of the house of councilors and the House of Representatives (Cullen, 2003). Politics in Japan tend to encompass them multi party system. The judicial power is normally vested in the Supreme Court and the lower courts. Japan is considered as a constitutional monarchy that has a system of civil law. Japan constitution defines the emperor as the symbol of the state and unity of the people. The political, power is normally held by the prime minister and some other elected members of the Diet.

The political climate in Japan is a dynamic and pragmatic fusion of the modern political organizational setup and the feudal ideals following World War II that paved the way to the political maturity of Japan and the remarkable economic growth. The status of Japan as one of the world largest economy is credited to the present Japan political climate that is suitable for industrial and economic growth. The government and political form of Japan is a constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy. Japan politics is subjected to a number of influences like that of statism of the Prussian, liberalism of the Anglo Americans, fascism of the Europeans, Leninist and Marxist ideology, and radicalism of the French (Norman, & Woods 2000).

Japan is a member of the United Nations and it pursues a permanent membership with the Security Council, and it is among the G4 nations seeking permanent membership. However, in regards to foreign relationships, Japan tends to have territorial disputes with South Korea over Liancourt Rocks, Russia over Kuril Islands, and China and Taiwan over Senkaku Islands (Cullen, 2003). These are disputes about control of natural resources and marine like possible reserves of natural gas and crude oil. Another ongoing dispute is with North Korea over the abduction of Japanese citizens and also the nuclear weapons programs.

Economic situation

The economy of Japan is considered to be the third largest in the world in nominal GDP and the 4th largest in purchasing power parity. Japan is the second largest developed economy and the third largest automobile manufacturing country that has the largest electronic good industry. Japan is considered as an innovative country and with competition from South Korea and China, manufacturing in Japan is now focusing on precision goods and high tech (Tsutsui, 2009). There has been a modest economic growth in Japan after 2000, but there has been a recession in the economy 3 times since 2008. The sharp down turn in global demand and business investment for the exports in Japan in late 2008 did push the nation to recession. The stimulus spending by the government did help the economy in recovering during the late 2009 and 2010, but there was also a failure in 2011 by the massive 9.0 magnitude earthquake which disrupted manufacturing, but the economy is was able to bounce back because of rebuilding the economic strength on areas which are not directly affected by the tsunami and earthquake (Tsutsui, 2009).

There is a bilateral economic relation between US and Japan where the economic policy of US towards Japan is aimed at increasing access of the Japan market that stimulate domestic demand economic growth. Japan is a major market for most of the United States products which include chemicals, pharmaceuticals, agricultural products, music, commercial aircrafts, plastics, scientific and medical supplies, films, and machineries. The Japan economy is vitally essential for most of the American businesses. Economy in Japan is in an era of globalization as the strength of the Japanese industry has grown steadily with the exports growing years after year (Hofmann, 2010). The growth in the economy is supported by the strong private sector facilities investment that is based on the high personal savings reaction that is accompanied by the significant changes in the industrial structure of Japan. Previously, the mainstays of the economy were light manufacturing and agriculture, but the focus has now shifted to heavy industry that includes ship building, motor vehicles, machine tools, electronic devices, and iron and steel.


Cullen, L (2003). A history of Japan Cambridge University Press

Hofmann, E (2010). Japan’s Economy GRIN Verlag

Kingston, J (2012). Contemporary Japan John Wiley & Sons

Norman, E & Woods, L (2000). Japan’s emergence as a modern state UBC Press

Tsutsui, W (2009). A companion to Japanese history John Wiley & Sons

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