ACCJ stresses urgency of concrete growth strategy measures
The American Chamber of Commerce in Japan (ACCJ) on Tuesday announced its support for the emphasis on economic growth of the new Abe administration. Japan’s government has indicated that one of its core focuses will be on how to return the Japanese economy to a growth trajectory. The ACCJ said it fully supports this overarching goal, but stresses the urgency of carrying out concrete growth strategy measures to that end.
ACCJ President Laurence W Bates recently laid out his vision for the Chamber for 2013, which focuses on three pillars of growth: 1) the personal and professional growth of its members through the Chamber’s leadership and networking opportunities, 2) growth of the ACCJ itself in terms of membership, and 3) helping spur growth in the Japanese economy by offering prudent and targeted policy recommendations developed through the collective expertise of the Chamber as well as outside experts.
The ACCJ has adopted the four-character phrase yoji-jukugo 共就成長 (kyouju-seichou), translated as “Achieving Growth Together” to encapsulate the endeavors of the Chamber in this year.
Consistent with the Chamber’s third pillar of growth, the ACCJ has concluded that in the two years since it published its prescient white paper, “Charting a New Course for Growth - Recommendations for Japan’s Leaders,” the growth strategy themes it stressed in that well-read report have become even more urgent and valid than they were at the time of its release, and therefore is again urging the Government of Japan to focus on those themes.
This major policy piece was prepared by the ACCJ Growth Strategy Task Force, which is comprised of nearly 70 ACCJ members, and was supported by 16 financial sponsors.
Bates said, “We proposed many concrete policies in our White Paper that are also in the public policy platform of the LDP and Prime Minister Abe. Like our White Paper, the LDP’s policy platform stresses the need for Japan to enhance the “metabolism” of its economy by making better use of its technology, and making the country more attractive for investment through a variety of reforms - including greater utilization of information technology, keeping more women in the work force, a more flexible labor market, lower corporate tax rates and other tax reforms, Economic Partnership Agreements and Free Trade Agreements, regulatory reform based on global-standards, requiring independent directors on listed company boards, and other measures.”
“We completely agree with the LDP that Japan’s economy has great potential. However, in order to achieve that potential, we believe concrete measures need to be implemented to address the structural weaknesses in the economy as Japan’s population declines. We hope that the Government of Japan truly recognizes the urgency of market expectations for swift concrete policies. If it does, it will be able achieve its goal of sustained economic growth.”