Pulse: Japan

What to Watch for in 2018

Here are ten things that I think will shape the global and Australian economies in 2018, and that expect I’ll be talking about at conferences and events over the course of the coming year.

1: Central banks
The era of ultra-cheap money, which began during the global financial crisis, is drawing to a close. Already, the US Federal Reserve has raised its key policy interest rate target four times since the end of 2015, and has begun to wind back its bloated balance sheet (something which will take a very long time to complete).

EconVue Spotlight

Changing Corporate Governance

This is an interview conducted by Hitoshi Chiba from the Public Relations Office of the Government of Japan.

Company Law Reform in Japan: Losing its Mojo?

This year, Japan’s governance reform drive will either keep going, or run out of steam. Judging from the amendment of the Company Law that is now underway by an advisory council of the Ministry of Justice (MOJ), the latter is likely.

Strikingly absent is a clear over-arching vision of the most important themes that amendment of the Company Law should address now that the country has a corporate governance code. In other words, what is missing, that can only be addressed via the Company Law?

Toshiba Nuclear Debacle Puts Governance in Spotlight - My Comments

Do others agree? We should not gang up on Toshiba so much as ask the question, what are the commonalities?, - if any. "Nicholas Benes, head of the Board Director Training Institute of Japan and one of the architects of Japan’s 2015 corporate governance code that sought to make the country’s companies more investor friendly, says Toshiba’s governance failures encapsulate broader shortcomings in corporate Japan.

My Take on Abe-Trump Summit in Foreign Affairs

Foreign Affairs ran my take on the Abe-Trump summit at https://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/japan/2017-02-16/trump-and-japan?cid=soc-fb-rdr .


Seminar in Chicago: “The Vital Role of Director Training in Japan’s Corporate Governance Reforms”

The Board Director Training Institute of Japan (BDTI) is a government-certified nonprofit providing one-day “director training” courses in English and Japanese, and governance-related seminars and e-learning courses. These programs teach participants key knowledge needed to serve on, report to, or analyze boards in Japan.

The G7 Meeting in Sendai: Mr Aso’s PEF Project

The sun has finally appeared, and the TV trucks are rolling out of this ancient hot springs town on the outskirts of Sendai, Japan. This was the location over the weekend of the G7 meeting of finance ministers and central bankers which, although civil, has ended with a lack of consensus.