Another downside of the weak yen is that it makes Japan less attractive to foreign workers that are so much needed. Including from countries like Vietnam. The yen has depreciated by 20% against the dong in two years. Very good article here in Nikkei Asia .
3 ( +8 / -5 )
"Since May 20, the government has been proposing that face masks be taken off in certain circumstances, both outside and inside, but even during the harsh summer months this year, many Japanese people wore masks everywhere."
"Many", you mean 95 %, right?
2 ( +5 / -3 )
@theResident of course there's a huge surge in bookings. J-fans have been in the starting blocks for 3 years now.
What will happen after this initial wave is anybody's guess. Mine is that the number of international tourists next year will land at between 30 and 50% of the 2019 level for a number of obvious reasons (economic crisis, compulsory vaccines, China, masks' wearing, ...).
Anyhow, 30 million tourists seemed like too much already so why not shoot for less, even more now with all these staffing problems.
3 ( +7 / -4 )
I would be surprised if foreign tourism rebounds next year higher than a third of its 2019 level. Die-hard Japan fans will come running for sure but many in Europe and the US will be careful about their expenses and/or will prefer to go to a closer destination or one where they don't have to wear a mask. Plus of course, Chinese will stay home.
Anyhow, as rightly mentioned by others here, foreign tourism accounts for peanuts in the country's GDP.
1 ( +11 / -10 )
I hear that many Japanese are upset about this because of the Korean roots of the Unification Church. But I wonder what percentage of the public is aware of the fact that their extortion business is exempt from taxes, which I think is a much bigger issue.
Is the Japanese press mentioning this tax exemption in their reporting or are they again beating around the bush?
10 ( +14 / -4 )
In other countries this would be the end of the company,
Volkswagen is still around, last I heard.
26 ( +29 / -3 )
I wonder what will happen in the case that one of these people gets tested positive during the trip... Are they going to close the borders again for two years?
8 ( +24 / -16 )
Have they been profiled? Most of them look like Japanese people to me.
40 ( +58 / -18 )
Read somewhere else that a government-appointed agency had given it's greenlight to cell phone communication (instead of radio) although there was no network in some parts of the boat's route. Is this true and, if so, is this being investigated?
3 ( +6 / -3 )
Isn't it even less than that? Your second 50% is based on the number of seats but I understand they get a lot of seats from inaka prefectures with small populations. Would be very interested to know the actual percentage of eligible voters who voted for them.
4 ( +7 / -3 )
Impossible to prove. Same goes for the contrary. So he's lying.
0 ( +2 / -2 )
One thing useful to combat misinformation is credibility. I don't know what's left of it with these guys after their "mild weather" and "safe and secure" Olympics lies, just to mention the latest and most obvious ones.
3 ( +4 / -1 )
It is impossible, and somewhat irrelevant already, to track down how many of these cases are directly or indirectly related to the Games. Obviously, delta variant is gaining ground everywhere, Olympics or not. There’s one thing undisputable though: it was the most stupid idea to have them in the middle of the pandemic. Except for those with financial skin in the game.
Hope this shocking number, not so much in absolute terms but rather the doubling in number of cases, will help Koike and Suga to sober up a bit after their disguting self congratulation moment yesterday.
14 ( +18 / -4 )
Agree except for the "excessively massive" cancellation penalty. It was about $5bn = 0.1% of annual GDP. In other words, almost peanuts. And also very hypothetical. Official amount for postponement-related cost is $3bn already. So at country level, the money loss was symbolic. Of course, very different for a few individuals and companies.
Sorry if I sound like a broken record for regular readers here but this point, the relative weight of the hypothetical penalty, is almost never raised, even in respectable newspapers like the Post or the Guardian. Don't know why.
3 ( +3 / -0 )
I learn more interesting stuff each day from @alfie than from the articles themselves :-). Thanks.
2 ( +2 / -0 )
According to a recent international poll by Ipsos, 57 percent of people think the games should not take place this year.
1 ( +4 / -3 )
Couldn't agree more. This is the only reason why Japan is putting up with this mess.
The very hypothetical penalty for pulling out was at around $5bn or 0.1% of the country's GDP. In other words, peanuts. The official, and therefore certainly underestimated, cost of the postponement alone was close to $3bn.
Just follow the money and you'll know why this is happening. I wish there were more investigative journalism here and abroad.
4 ( +5 / -1 )
That's interesting but... Sources?
IOC is not really renown for its financial transparency.
-1 ( +1 / -2 )
I don't think the "safe and secure" crowd is going to have many field days, going forward.
9 ( +12 / -3 )
United by emotion.
3 ( +5 / -2 )
Just for the (not) fun of it, I thought I'd share here the offical reply I just got from the EU on my question regarding their support to "safe and secure" Games.
My question: "Good morning, I have a question for Mr Michel and Ms von der Leyen. How is it possible that the EU makes the following statement: “We support the holding of the Olympic and Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020 in a safe and secure manner this summer as a symbol of global unity in defeating COVID-19”, two days after a publication by top scientist of an article showing that the IOC Playbook for the Games is absolutely insufficient to guarantee "safe and secure" Games? Not to mention the numerous Japanese scientists and doctors\' associations that previously said the same thing. What led the EU to sign such a statement? Looking forward to your reply,"
EU reply (one month later) : "We kindly draw your attention to the fact that the organisers have in the meanwhile taken additional decisions regarding the safe and secure holding of the Olympic Games."
12 ( +15 / -3 )
Find the title a bit odd. "First" Covid-19 case. You mean you were expecting that and there will be more to come?
But, we've been told ad nauseam that the Village, of all places, would be a safe and secure bubble.
In that case, shouldn't the title be "One Covid-19 case found at the Village"?
15 ( +21 / -6 )
Their only consistency in the last months is the absolute contradiction between their declarations and the reality of things. They live in a parallel world.
9 ( +10 / -1 )
Thanks for the WP article link. Particularly like that part:
"The Games will take place “at any cost,” Seiko Hashimoto, president of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Committee, has said, as if she were Churchill and this were 1941."
6 ( +7 / -1 )
The Games do not profit to Japan but to a small number of powerful people in Japan, as they did in each host country since at least the L.A. Games. That's part of the scheme. You need an inside accomplice to rob a bank. The loser is the tax payer.
6 ( +8 / -2 )
Fully agree. That's the bad side of the gambarou work culture.
2 ( +3 / -1 )
Bach is upbeat. Everyone else sad or angry or both. Well done.
14 ( +16 / -2 )
Probably in anticipation to the upcoming fiasco, I’ve seen some posts here lately trying to exonerate JGOV as its hands were supposedly tied by the IOC contract. Well, as it’s been said many times already, I don't think that the IOC would have pressed charges against Japan, as the PR damage would have been very high. I also think it was a very convenient thing to say for JGOV.
But my point is that the financial penalty for Japan to pull out of the Games, roughly $5bn, was only about 0.1 % of its GDP. Why would JGOV not choose that option when experts said there were important risks to the public health? If you scale this 0.1% down to a household making JPY 5 million in annual revenues, that’s JPY5,000, the price of a parking ticket. Would you take ANY health-related risk for you and the rest of your household for so little money? Of course not. They did. Why?
The only reason I can see is that Japanese top politicians and businessmen have huge financial interests. If you rob a bank, it’s always easier with an accomplice inside.
It’s not only Japan, it’s just the IOC business model, repeated every four years.
5 ( +6 / -1 )
I wish I could be as relaxed as you are but I just can't. Even though I am part of the lucky minority that has not been affected by Covid, neither physically nor financially.
I just can't get over the fact that the $30 bn party is financed at 80% by the public for the massive benefit of a few, and forced down on us during a pandemic for that very reason.
You don't understand people like me. Fine, it's reciprocal.
10 ( +12 / -2 )