As you might know, our institute has been intensively doing marketing offensive rather in the Japanese domestic market than abroad. This is because a couple of years ahead is extremely important to enable Japan to be revitalized enough for accomplishing “Pax Japonica”. And to do so, our institute headed by myself urgently needs to know what local structures our country has in each regions. A series of business and research trips is therefore planned ahead.
In this regard, we’ve been preparing to launch courses of lectures for company executives and entrepreneurs in the following three regions: TOHOKU (in the city of SENDAI), SHIKOKU (in the city of MATSUYAMA) and KYUSHU (in the city of KITAKYUSHU/FUKUOKA). The first one in SENDAI is about to get started from April 27. My colleagues in charge are accelerating preparation works for the very first project.
Having done feasibility studies for these courses to revive local economies, it spontaneously occurred to me that it’s the same question that matters in every one of these Japanese local societies as follows:
-Thanks to “US-Japan alliance”, Japan was tolerated to massively do export offensive after the WWII. Big manufacturing corporates led this “economic” war vis-à-vis the western world and brought a huge amount of money from the international market successfully.
-For these big corporates, “global optimizing” was not necessary yet. Instead of that, “domestic optimizing” is what they had to think about. Each companies sought local economies in Japan where they could effectively settle down their own factories. The Japanese local economies began to flourish.
-However, in the course of time, Japan has been facing massive appreciation of JPY step by step since 1980s. The last counterattack she faced from other western advanced economies was caused from 2009 to 2012. The Japanese big manufacturers were forced to remove their production bases from Japan to abroad, because of “global optimization”.
-What has been then left in local economies are the following: Small (usually very innovative) manufacturers, infrastructure companies, local universities as research institute and laboratories, and administration authorities. Since all of them were closely connected particularly to big manufacturing companies, whose production bases began to vanish, local innovation ecosystems have been totally destroyed. While infrastructure companies do not need and want “innovations”, local innovative SMEs are trying to be globalized, but usually in vain. Local bureaucrats stand under political pressure not to worsen the situation, but they don’ t know “A to C” of how to do business. Local academicians really love to continue their research and experiments, which will never be monetized in lack of the above mentioned local innovative ecosystems.
Based on this and that, we Japanese urgently need to acknowledge it’s rethinking “global optimization” that really matters. As long as we won’t change framework in this regard, nothing won’t be changed in a positive manner. A solid national strategy for this purpose is also urgently needed, however, previous leadership in Japan never thinks about it. This is exactly why it’s essential for the Japanese to start their own style of “PERESTROIKA” as not slight “structural reform”, but total change of socio-economic framework per se.
From my viewpoint, future success of “Pax Japonica” tremendously depends on whether we’ll immediately change this old-fashioned framework. Our institute continues to work on it by involving a huge number of local and national stake holders one by one. Stay tuned.