Why Invest

Why Invest in Japan

An Adaptable and Stable Business Model during COVID-19

Japan recognizes the seriousness of the current COVID-19 pandemic and has been one of the world's leading examples of mitigating coronavirus infection rates. Likewise, its strong business environment has adapted to the changes necessary for both its employees and its customers to remain stable during such uncertain times. See how Japan's business ecosystem is making these changes at the below links:

- Full Version: Work Style Changes in Japan (YouTube)

- Short Version: Work Style Changes in Japan (YouTube)

One of the World's Largest Economies

Japan’s strong economy is helped by its economic sophistication and pro-business policies. Japan is the third-largest economy in the world and the most complex according to the World Bank.


The nation’s largest industries include automobiles, automotive parts manufacturing, electronic equipment, machine tools, chemicals, textiles, and processed foods. Japan’s top export destinations are the United States, China, South Korea, Thailand, and Hong Kong, giving the nation strong economic ties to its surrounding Asia-Pacific neighbors.


The Global Competitiveness Report for 2019 ranked Japan the sixth most globally competitive country in the world, citing the nation’s large market size, business sophistication, quality of local suppliers, and strong international distribution controls as some of its most outstanding business features. Of the Fortune Global 500 companies, 52 are headquartered in Japan.


For companies seeking to establish a regional headquarters, Japan’s location also makes it ideal for conducting business in Japan and the rest of the Asia-Pacific region. Flights from Japan to surrounding cities (Beijing, Shanghai, Singapore, Hong Kong, Bangkok, Sydney) are short, affordable, and often available several times throughout the day, making it easier for businesses to plan trips around normal work hours.


In addition to its positive economic outlook, Japan is noted for its internal stability. The nation is considered one of the most politically stable countries in the world, as well as one of the safest to travel in for work or business.

A Strong Government Emphasis on R&D Investment

Japan has long been a face of national commitment to research and development. For over 20 years, Japan has ranked in the top three countries for total % of GDP devoted to research and development practices. As of 2018, for every 10,000 employees in Japan, 53 are research professionals, making Japan first among all G7 nations for its ratio of researchers to civilians. 


National commitment to the development of new technologies and resources exists not only within the government, but also in the private sector. Japan has the highest number of patent applications per one million people among all countries. Japan also has some of the strongest intellectual property laws in the world, making it ideal for businesses with research and development interests. Additionally, Japan has produced 26 Nobel Prize laureates since 1949, the majority of them in physics, chemistry, and medicine. 


Businesses can expect to find strong support for research and development activities in Japan: many municipal governments offer incentive packages to foreign companies who establish a research and development center in designated special economic development zones. Various municipal governments in Japan also offer incentive packages to foreign companies who hire skilled domestic labor as part of their business expansions. More details regarding these incentives can be found HERE.

Learn More with JETRO's Market Reports

JETRO creates tailored market reports that explore consumer trends, competitor activities, and market outlooks for various industries. These reports can be accessed by contacting the nearest regional JETRO office and scheduling a free business consultation.


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