business

Japan tightens rules on foreign stakes in 518 firms, citing national security

24 Comments
By Tetsushi Kajimoto and Daniel Leussink

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© Thomson Reuters 2020.

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24 Comments
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Well.. Japan is a "democratic" nation with a "free market", so I guess this makes perfect sense. It's not like the businesses are state-owned like communist nations...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

OssanAmericaToday  09:41 am JST

The only "foreign investment" that poses any security risk to Japan in China.

Wrong. France government poses a bigger threat as they almost infiltrated Mitsubishi if Japan didn't take action on Gosn.

China don't try their luck in Japan because they know they have no chance, there's plenty easier preys elsewhere

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Japan needs to get a grip on its food security. Only 40% is now produced in the country. 60% is imported.

About 50% of foods are wasted producing about 6 million tons per year. 50% of the waste is produced by the commercial sectors.

After Abe signed the Trump trade deal last year, the idea of food security becomes more unrealistic. There is no way that Japanese farmers can compete against American farmers and American big corporations. Japanese will ultimately lose in the price war.

Even the EU vehemently protects its ailing agriculture sector, while Abe signed a part of it to appease Trump.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

This is a move to prevent China from playing an unfair M&A against the Western order. A welcoming move that follows the footsteps of CIFUS in the USA.

Exemptions to allay such concerns include investment without pre-screening by foreign financial institutions, and the waiver of pre-reporting requirements for certified sovereign wealth funds and other investors who meet certain criteria.

Rest assured, Western companies will still be able to buy Japan for cheap.

Sony has 56% of shareholders as foreigners. Toshiba with 68% of shareholders as foreigners. Takeda Pharma with 50.2% of shareholders as foreigners as well as the entire executives are foreign. The list goes on, and some of these firms are protected by the act.

Not to mention that Masayoshi Son is willing to sell his stakes in Vision Fund and Softbank for foreigners in case of things go wrong. I highly doubt that Abe and Aso can use this bill if SoftBank to be sold to American equity firms. I dare them to a pull a Ghosn stunt on Paul Singer or any American to-be-appointed executive in Japan.

Well, The US is not tyrannical as China, so Japanese cronies can sleep well.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

marcelitoToday 11:43 am JST

Well, the Chinese company Inspur, the world's third largest server maker, has just entered the Japanese market so maybe he's right....

Fair enough , but did Inspur enter J-market because of the law revision or despite of it?

My comment was meant to be ironical. I'd just been reading about Taro Kono/Kono Taro's Trump-like meltdown at NHK:

http://shingetsunewsagency.com/2020/05/10/misreporting-bias-and-fake-news/

This story fails to go into detail about some of the more surprising additions to the list:

"A number of companies whose relevance to national security was less obvious also made the lists, from Tokyo Disneyland operator Oriental Land Co. to used golf store chain Golf Do Co. Some current and recent targets of activist investors also appeared, including concert venue operator Tokyo Dome Corp. which has been eyed by Oasis Management Co., and Shibaura Machine Co., formerly known as Toshiba Machine, a target of controversial activist investor Yoshiaki Murakami.

Fumio Matsumoto, chief strategist at Okasan Securities Co., says while electronic and precision makers were expected to be on the list, “there was more small-and-mid cap stocks on the list than expected, and it’s hard to see the reason why they are there.”

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-05-11/japan-moves-to-limit-foreign-investment-in-half-of-listed-firms?sref=tXumBMhb

Second hand golf clubs a matter of national security? What's that all about then?

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Japan needs to get a grip on its food security. Only 40% is now produced in the country. 60% is imported.

About 50% of foods are wasted producing about 6 million tons per year. 50% of the waste is produced by the commercial sectors.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

If it fights against China control, then good

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Counterproductive isolationist paranoia...

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Well, the Chinese company Inspur, the world's third largest server maker, has just entered the Japanese market so maybe he's right....

Fair enough , but did Inspur enter J-market because of the law revision or despite of it?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

You'd be a fool to think China was the only threat. No, I'm not talking just about Russia.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

"I can't believe that most of you guys support this decision by Japanese government. It's bad for all foreigners living in Japan to be limited. It might be the first step in a long process of separation.

I understand that it has been made to protect Japanese companies from Chinese capital and buyouts.

But how about foreigners other than average Joe who is an English teacher with no Japanese skills. I'm worrying what will be next? Special compartment on the trains and subways to divide foreigners from locals as obviously every foreigner is tourist ?

Well we will see but Im not optimistic..."

Someone needs classes on reading comprehension. Urgently.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

stop the joke. japan is buying other countries companies with BOJ fake printed money. the right term is money laundry. now japan do not want that other countries do same as Japanese do...

2 ( +5 / -3 )

i think the chinese too are doing the same. it is only fair.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Tencent holdings is a very alive example of the matter.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

In a highly regulated public corporation, you would have to walk me through how having Chinese shareholders is a danger. On the other hand, if they completely take over a company then that is a different story. In my opinion, having stronger corporate governance with outside directors and transparency about financials, then the risk is a lot less.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

The only "foreign investment" that poses any security risk to Japan in China. Same as in the US, UK and others. About time Japan got on the ball.

Pssst. Not sure if you got the memo or not but japans not at it's pre bubble levels anymore. It needs all the handouts it can get.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

I can't believe that most of you guys support this decision by Japanese government. It's bad for all foreigners living in Japan to be limited. It might be the first step in a long process of separation.

I understand that it has been made to protect Japanese companies from Chinese capital and buyouts.

But how about foreigners other than average Joe who is an English teacher with no Japanese skills. I'm worrying what will be next? Special compartment on the trains and subways to divide foreigners from locals as obviously every foreigner is tourist ?

Well we will see but Im not optimistic...

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

So, a tightening of the investment law is aimed at accelarating foreign investment...uhm...OK, Taro ..it really is time to sail off into that golden sunset retirement now.

Well, the Chinese company Inspur, the world's third largest server maker, has just entered the Japanese market so maybe he's right....

https://asia.nikkei.com/Business/Technology/Chinese-server-giant-Inspur-wades-into-Japan-s-5bn-market

2 ( +2 / -0 )

It’s about time. Corporations and the govt have known for years that Japan is a paradise for espionage and intellectual theft.

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

The only "foreign investment" that poses any security risk to Japan in China. Same as in the US, UK and others. About time Japan got on the ball.

-1 ( +6 / -7 )

"The revised law is aimed at accelerating foreign direct investment in Japan," said Finance Minister Taro Aso, referring to a law passed in November,

So, a tightening of the investment  law is aimed at accelarating foreign investment...uhm...OK, Taro ..it really is time to sail off into that golden sunset retirement now.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

Long overdue to protect Japanese companies.

6 ( +11 / -5 )

"The revised law is aimed at accelerating foreign direct investment in Japan,"

It makes sense for the likes of Japan Display and what used to be Japan-owned Sharp since these are not really "key" industries.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

A move in the right direction. Japan has been too careless in allowing foreigners to have big stakes in key industries and buy a large amount of land. All this has to change. Obviously the tide has shifted.

-2 ( +12 / -14 )

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