JETRO Publishes Survey on Business Operations of Foreign-Affiliated Companies in Japan

JETRO has published the results of a survey conducted of 6,607 foreign-affiliated companies based in Japan from October to November 2022.
The purpose of the survey is to grasp the current status and trends of foreign-affiliated companies based in Japan, the attractiveness and challenges of the business environment in Japan, and the support needed, as well as to prepare data used for effective FDI promotion projects and for reference to improve business environment and for related measures.

Based on this objective, the survey scope was expanded to all foreign-affiliated companies in Japan from JETRO-supported companies only, last year. This is the second such survey and received valid responses from 1,348 companies (valid response rate: 20.4%).

Key Findings

1.Business expansion in Japan in the future

  • About half of respondents report sales increase compared to the previous year, indicating a clear recovery trend.
  • 56.1% intend to “strengthen or expand” their business in Japan in the future, up 3.5 points from the previous survey.
  • Intentions to establish new bases/strengthen existing bases also increased from the previous survey, indicating an upward drive.

2.Attractiveness and challenges of the business environment in Japan

  • The most attractive feature of Japan selected was its “market scale,” while “clustering/presence of customer and related industries” was the highest for the manufacturing industry.
  • Companies whose parent companies have only recently been established and companies that have recently entered the Japanese market tend to consider medium-to long-term growth potential in their own business fields as attractive.
  • Simplification/digitalization of administrative procedures and communication in foreign languages saw improvement in recent years.
    Expectations are particularly high for improvement of environment regarding “securing human resources.

3.Securing human resources and facilitating the employment and residence of international personnel

  • While hiring Japanese mid-career workers is the mainstream, the intention to hire international students are observed especially among Asian companies.
  • “IT/technical personnel” and “sales/marketing personnel” were cited difficult to secure. Lack of foreign language skills such as English is a bottleneck.
  • Simplification/digitization of administrative procedures and relaxation of status of residence were most cited in order to facilitate smooth employment and residence of excellent foreign human resources.

4.Collaboration/Cooperation and its Enhancement

  • 33.0% are implementing or considering collaboration/cooperation with Japanese partners, in which especially pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, and information and communication industries are showing significantly proactive engagement.
  • Many companies seek technology and R&D capabilities of collaboration/cooperation partners, and have high expectations for those capacities from Japanese companies and universities.
  • Challenges vary depending on the status of collaboration/cooperation, and support is needed according to the stage.

Download the survey here.

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