Tokyo International Forum

Japanese Overseas Subsidiaries Increase Sales for 4th Quarter in a Row

Total sales of Japanese overseas subsidiaries have increased 7.9 percent from January to March 2017, according to a recent survey published by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI). This marks the fourth consecutive quarter of increasing sales.

Sales by Region

Sales in Asia grew 8.8 percent during the quarter, also showing growth for the fourth quarter in a row. With 47.8 percent, the region accounts for the lion share of Japanese subsidiaries abroad.

Sales in North America, which is based on 31.9 percent of all subsidiaries, was up 4.3 percent from the previous year, an increase for 15 consecutive quarters. At the same time, sales in Europe (12.5 percent of all subsidiaries) also improved by 7.8 percent from the previous year, an increase for four consecutive quarters.

Sales of transportation equipment accounted for 55.8 percent of all sales, with increases seen in North America and China, in particular.

Capital Investment

The total amount of capital investment by Japanese overseas subsidiaries declined by 13.6 percent from the previous year, a decrease for 12 consecutive quarters.

By region, capital investment declined 14.0 percent compared to the previous year, a decrease for 17 quarters in a row. Especially investment in ASEAN-4 economies showed a two-digit decline for seven consecutive quarters.

Capital investment in North America was down by 0.8 percent from the previous year, a decrease for the first time in three quarters, while that in Europe showed a decrease of 40.9 percent year-on-year, a decrease for the first time in five quarters.

Number of Employees of Japanese Overseas Subsidiaries

The total number of employees in subsidiaries abroad improved slightly by 1.9 percent from the previous year, an increase for two consecutive quarters.

Looking at the number by region, those in Asia increased by 1.3 percent compared to the previous year, growing for two consecutive quarters. Noteworthy, the number of employees in ASEAN-4 economies was up for two consecutive quarters.

Employees in North America improved by 2.9 percent in number year-on-year, an increase for 23 consecutive quarters. At the same time, numbers in Europe were up 4.9 percent from the previous year, an increase for 15 consecutive quarters.

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