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Highlights: June 2006 Issue

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: Dr. Mark Scher on Japan's Postal Privatization

Postal privatization continues to be hotly-debated in Japan. Domestic groups of all sorts, as well as domestic and foreign banks, insurance companies and delivery companies, are all lobbying for privatization to occur in a manner which is best suited to their own purposes, but last year’s privatization bills leave many, if not most, implementation issues to the future. This is a major focus of our June issue (to subscribe, ), because our subscribers rely on us for objective, authoritative and original insight on the business environment in Japan.

Will postal privatization eventually occur? If so, in what form? Or might the entire idea die with the end of Prime Minister Koizumi’s term, or lack of interest in the idea on the part of one or more of his successors? To answer these and other questions, Dr. Mark Scher, Director of the New York-based Postal Financial Services Development and one of the world’s experts on postal savings systems, agreed to share his frequently contrarian view on postal privatization in an exclusive interview.

Scher has over 35 years working with the Japanese financial community, and literally wrote the book on Japan Post.  His book ‘Small Savings Mobilization and Asian Economic Development: The Role of Postal Financial Services’ (New York: M.E. Sharpe, 2004), co-edited with Naoyuki Yoshino (an Economics Professor at Keio University who has served on many senior Japanese government policy councils), is used around the world, and in Japan, at the most senior levels of government as well as as a basic reference on the topic.  It is, literally, the bible on postal savings worldwide.

Hear what Scher has to say about the Japan Post; about rural communities; and about financial services claims that they need a 'level playing field' to compete with Japan Post.  Here him talk about Koizumi's legacy and what that means for postal privatization.  Japan Post provides social services in rural communities that private companies will not be interested in continuing.  Scher's very knowledgeable, and contrarian views, are not to be missed.

Filtering Japan's Water: The Everpure Japan Story

The need for filtration in Japan's food services industry is strong and growing.  A number of competitors, including Everpure, Cuno, Organo, Meisei and Kurita, are offering new products.  Everpure Japan continues to develop new technology that already leads in removing particulates and other problems, and it's picking up big new accounts like Universal Studios Osaka.  Here's how a small but innovative brand continues high single-digit growth year after year in Japan, in what many consider to be a mature industry.  And then there are new markets, like water for washing rice.

A Specialist Offers Advice: "Divorce in Japan: What a Mess!"

Given the enduring myths surrounding 'docile Japanese wives' and 'Japan's selfless corporate workers', many might be envisioning Japan as a homogeneous land of stable families and low divorce rates.   But the truth is far different, as told in the statistics as well as in a growing number of court cases.  This month, our specialist contributor, a social critic of growing prominence in Japan, discusses divorce in Japan and why it's important for business executives to understand what really goes on in some Japanese families.

Japan Insight: Get the Scoop

Courtesy of AIG: Tips on Direct Marketing in Japan; Itochu Ups Oddcast Stake in Avatar Race

From the Editors

Japan -- An Energy Leader?

Plus much more...

Click here to subscribe, or order this back issue after September 1, 2006 (if available)

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