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Trading Partner Portal: Japan

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Key Country Contacts

CalChamber Resources Business Cultural/Educational
Japanese Chambers in California
Japanese Consular Contacts
International Trade FAQs
    Obtaining a Certificate of Origin
    Setting up a Business in California
    Country Studies - Foreign Market Sources
U.S. Commercial Service Japan
AmCham Japan
Japan America Society
Japan Business Association
Japan Echo
Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO)
METI (Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry)
Technology Advanced Metropolitan Area (TAMA) Association / Greater Tokyo Initiative 
California Japan Scholars Program
Osaka University
International Universities/Programs
Over 60 California cities have sister cities in Japan. See a list at
Sister Cities International .

CalChamber Hosts The Technology Advanced Metropolitan Area (TAMA) Association from Japan​

The California Chamber of Commerce hosted representatives from the Japanese Northern California Chamber of Commerce and The Technology Advanced Metropolitan Area (TAMA) Association​, based in Tokyo on December 17. This meeting was focused on TAMA’s plan to begin doing business with California in 2014.

                              
 (From left to right) Susanne Stirling, CalChamber Vice President of International Affairs; Toshihiko Sekine, former President and current Advisort at Fuji Xerox; Hideto Okazaki Managing Director of TAMA; June-Ko Nakagawa, Executive Director, Japanese Chamber of Commerce of Northern California)

​Read CalChamber top story​


Consular Corps Reception

 
At the consular corps reception, held in Sacramento on May 21, 2012, are (from left) Hiroshi Haruki, Fujitsu Management Services of America, ; Governor Brown; and Hideki Oshima, Japan Airlines Col, Ltd.
 
 
Japan and California:
Partners Across the Pacific
 
 
Presented by the
California Chamber of Commerce
Japanese Chamber of Commerce of Northern California
Japan Business Association of Southern California

Leading California Export Countries
Source: US Department of Commerce 
Trans-Pacific Partnership Trade Agreement

Canada, Mexico and Japan have stated their intent to join the TPP negotiations. 
 
 
 
Trade Overview

The United States is a large supplier of computer and electronic products, chemicals and transportation equipment to Japan. It is also one of the largest U.S. foreign markets for agricultural products. U.S. exports to Japan were over $65 billion in 2013, making it the fourth largest export destination for the U.S.  Imports from Japan to the United States were $138.5 billion, with transportation equipment accounting for 42.4 percent. According to the most recent figures, U.S. direct investment to Japan totaled $134 billion in 2012, largely in financial, software and Internet services. Foreign direct investment from Japan into the United States was more than $308 billion.
 
California continues to be the top exporting state to Japan, accounting for nearly 20% of total US exports. Japan has remained California’s fourth largest export market since 2010, after Mexico, Canada and China. California exports to Japan, the world’s third largest economy, totaled $12.7 billion in 2013. Computers and electronic products accounted for 22.9 percent of total exports. California imports from Japan were $38.4 billion, with transportation equipment accounting for over half of total imports. California is currently the top importing state in the US for products from Japan. In addition, California buys more products from Japan than any other country besides China. 

World Trade Organization, February 2011


June 26, 2013 – The U.S. – Japan Business Council (USJBC) released Pacific Partners Japan's Economic Importance to the U.S. The report provides an assessment of Japan’s importance to the U.S. economy and measures the economic contribution of Japanese firms in the U.S..  This snapshot provides clear and compelling evidence of the significant contribution Japanese companies make to the U.S. economy. 

California Business with Japan

U.S.-Japan Economic Harmonization Initiative, 2010

Yokohama, Japan & APEC 2010

Economic Recovery Efforts in Japan

On June 23, 2011 Calchamber hosted its annual luncheon welcoming guests representing Japanese – American business in California.  Japan’s economic recovery after the Tohoku earthquake and related tsunami was the topic of discussion.

Figures released in May showed that Japan’s economy shrank at an annual rate of 3.7 percent in the first quarter of 2011, tipping the country into a recession, as the crisis disrupted production and prompted consumers to cut back on spending. Economists projected that the Japanese economy will shrink again in the second current quarter, but that the recession may be deep but quick, The New York Times recently reported.

Japan recently launched the Visit Japan 2011 campaign, spreading the world that the nation is safe for visitors traveling on business and pleasure. For more information visit the website, www.visitjapan.jp

The U.S. State Department recently updated its travel alert for Japan, saying that while the situation at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant remains serious and dynamic, the health and safety risks to land areas outside a 50-mile radius of the plant are low and do not pose significant risks to U.S. citizens. 

Related Articles & Documents:

 

 
 
 
Allan Zaremberg, President and CEO of the CalChamber, exchanges gifts with Hiroshi Haruki, President of the Japanese Chamber of Commerce of Northern California, and Koichi Kinoshita, President of the Japanese Business Association.

 

         

 

The Alliance Forum Foundation (AFF) was founded in 1985 in California. During the 1980's, AFF played a significant role in easing trade friction between Japan and the US in the field of industrial high technology. In the early 1990's, AFF concentrated its efforts on the promotion of strategic business tie-ups between US IT /bio venture companies and leading Japanese companies with support from the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of International Trade and Industry, and the US Government. Today, the mission of the Alliance Forum Foundation is evolving with the times. Beginning in the year 2000, AFF redefined its objectives and multi-faceted mission based on the recognition that computer-centralized technology has reached maturization as the core industry driving the global economy. As a result, the foundation is focusing its efforts and activities on the following three themes:

The Themes of AFF's Vision for the 21st Century:

    1. Nurturing new technologies and industries capable of generating a new core industry and facilitating debate on new industries for the post-computer era. 
       
    2. Promoting exchange and debate centering on new forms of corporate governance, corporate management, and the theory of Public Interest Capitalism which can provide solutions to problems encountered by shareholder-centric management that places over-emphasis on short-term profit for shareholders.
       
    3. Fostering debate, exchange, and collaboration in various fields related to poverty alleviation in developing countries.

JETRO Affiliation Program

 
The California Chamber of Commerce recently has signed onto the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) Affiliation Program.
 
 
The "JETRO Connection," is designed to foster dynamic and mutually beneficial relationships between JETRO and various industry-affiliated and government-related organizations and media. Working as a bridge, JETRO helps organizations stay connected with up-to-date Japanese market information, and makes it easy to reach vibrant and competitive Japanese companies. Both organizations have agreed to support events, distribute information and assist members in trade-related endeavors.
 

Read the entire story in the Daily Headlines Archive.

Find a Business Partner via JETRO
If your company is not yet ready to open an independent office in Japan, start by working with a Japanese partner who knows the market, has a developed network, and understands the business climate of Japan. Qualified companies can apply to join one of our Business Matching or Invitation Programs.

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May 2013
  
Information about JETRO
December 2012

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JETRO USA Launches New Website
JETRO USA takes a big step towards providing better support for U.S. companies looking to do business with Japan by launching its new and more interactive website at

The website, fitted with a dramatically new design and navigation, will draw attention to JETRO USA's two main focuses:

  • Helping U.S. companies establish a business presence in Japan.
  • Helping U.S. companies procure Japanese goods and technology from Japan.
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Aug. 28, 2012 - The subsidy Program for Promoting Asian Site Location in Japan is intended to sustain and strengthen high-value-added business sites in Japan and to achieve sustainable growth of the Japanese economy by supporting the establishment of new high-value-added sites in Japan by global companies operating internationally, such as Regional Headquarters or R&D Sites, which have been proven to have a significant impact on the Japanese economy, and by strategically and proactively inviting and building high-value-added business functions that match the strength of the Japanese economy.

 

2010 Asia Trade Mission

Governor Schwarzenegger announced in July 2010 that he would lead a delegation of California business leaders and key State of California government officials to Asia in September 2010. Asia is a dynamic and growing market for California products, produce and intellectual property. The dates of the trade mission were September 9, 2010 to September 15, 2010. The delegation started in Hangzhou and Shanghai, traveled to Tokyo and ended in Seoul. This trade mission was successful and will bring many economic and cultural benefits to the people of California.

      CalChamber Joins Governor on Successful Asia Trade Mission 
       CalChamber, September 21, 2010 

       CalChamber Trade Mission Blog

       HangzhouShanghai 
            Tokyo ~ Seoul

       California Business Delegation

2004 Trade Mission to Japan

The California Chamber of Commerce joined Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger's trade and tourism mission to Japan. The November 2004 visit was the Governor's first trade mission to promote California's business climate, to encourage travel and tourism, and to market California-grown products.

Read the entire story in the November 2004 Alert .

Recent Events

Japanese Business Executives Meet with CalChamber Leaders

Leaders of Japanese companies with a California presence mingled with colleagues and members of the California Chamber of Commerce on June 13, 2013 in Sacramento. Representatives of the Japanese Chamber of Commerce of Northern California and the Japan Business Association of Southern California visit Sacramento each year to bring attention to the long-standing economic ties between California and Japan. ​ 

 
 
In photo are (front row, from left): Takashi Amino, regional officer & general manager, Mitsui & Company, Inc.; Masumi Muroi, western states regional officer & head of Los Angeles office, Mitsui & Company, Inc.; Allan Zaremberg, CalChamber president and CEO;  Hiroshi Tomita, president, Konica Minolta Laboratory USA, Inc; Akihiko Hara, president and CEO, FX Global, Inc.;  Hideki Kishimoto, executive vice president, Union Bank,  general manager, The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, Ltd;  (back row, from left): Hitoshi Yamamuro, vice president & regional manager, Japan Airlines Company, Ltd.;  Susanne Stirling, CalChamber vice president, international affairs; Norio Minato, vice president, R & D engineering, Mazda North American Operations; Masao Sasayama, senior vice president, Union Bank, N.A., Pacific Rim Corporate; Masahiro Miyazaki,  president and CEO,  Hitachi High Technologies America, Inc.; June-ko Nakagawa, executive director Japanese Chamber of Commerce, Northern California; Scott Keene, Advisor. ​
 
 
​​Impact of Toyota, Japan-Affiliated Companies in Spotlight​​

(March 7, 2013) Toyota executive James Lentz describes the economic and jobs impact of the automaker’s presence in the United States
and California at the March 7 dinner gathering of the
CalChamber Board of Directors, the day after being named
to oversee all Toyota’s North America affi liates as senior
managing offi cer of Toyota Motor Corporation, CEO North
America Region, and president and COO of Toyota Motor
North America.

(March 7, 2013) Jun Niimi, consulate general of Japan, comments on the
strong trade and investment ties between Japan and
California at the CalChamber Board dinner. Top representatives
of the Japan Business Association of Southern California also
attended. Japan has remained California’s fourth largest
export market since 2011 ($13.1 billion in 2012 —
8% of all state exports). Computers/electronic products
accounted for 23% of total exports
.
Japanese Business Executives Meet with CalChamber Leaders
Leaders of Japanese companies with a California presence mingled with colleagues and members of the California Chamber of Commerce on May 21-22, 2012 in Sacramento. Representatives of the Japanese Chamber of Commerce of Northern California and the Japan Business Association of  Southern California visit Sacramento each year to bring attention to the long-standing economic ties between California and Japan.



In photo are Seated (from left): Gosuke Nakae, general manager, Mitsubishi International Corporation; Allan Zaremberg, CalChamber president and CEO; Hiroshi Haruki, president and CEO, Fujitsu Management Services of America, and president of JCCNC; Timothy S. Dubois, president, The Edward Thomas Collection, and CalChamber chair; Masumi Muroi, Western States regional office, Mitsui & Co. (USA), Inc., and vice president, JBA; Yusuke Ozawa, general manager, Sumitomo Corporation of America. Standing (from left): Norio Minato, vice president, Mazda North American Operations; Susanne Stirling, CalChamber vice president, international affairs; Masahiro Nakada, president, Salad Cosmo U.S.A. Corporation; Hideki Oshima, vice president (Northwest Region), Japan Airlines Co., Ltd.; Masao Sasayama, general manager, The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ; June-ko Nakagawa, executive director, JCCNC; and Scott Keene, Keene Law, San Francisco.
CalChamber and Japanese Business Leaders Discuss Trade at CalChamber-Hosted Luncheon Gathering

On June 23, 2011 members of the Japan Business Association and the Japanese Chamber of Commerce of Northern California met with California Chamber of Commerce representatives to exchange comments on Japan’s economic recovery efforts, international trade and the world economy.  Both associations include Japanese businesses that invest in California and employ Californians. JBA is marking its 50th anniversary in California while JCCNC is observing its 60th year.

 
 
 
From Left to right:   Seated- Gosuke Nakae, Mitsubishi International, Masanori Yasunaga, Calbee America, Hiroshi Haruki, President, Japanese Chamber of Commerce of Northern California, Allan Zaremberg, President & CEO, California Chamber of Commerce, Koichi Kinoshita, President, Japanese Business Association of Southern California, Yuko Kaifu, Union Bank, Katsuya Takamiya, Mitsubishi Electric   Standing- Steven Teraoka, Teraoka & Partners, Susanne Stirling, California Chamber of Commerce, Hiroshi Tomita, Konica Minolta Laboratory, Toshihiko Sekine, FX Global, Ko Takigawa, Bank of Tokyo, June-ko Nakagawa, Executive Director, JCCNC, Scott Keene, Advisor to JBA & JCCNC

Related Documents
New Consul General Yasumasa Nagamine Visits CalChamber Vice Minister Shukuri Visits CalChamber

New Consul General Yasumasa Nagamine representing Japan in San Francisco and Northern California visited the California Chamber of Commerce
(December 10, 2007) New Consul General Yasumasa Nagamine (center), representing Japan in San Francisco and Northern California, visited the California Chamber of Commerce. Topics of  
discussion included the general economic situation in California and climate change issues. At left is Susanne Stirling, CalChamber vice president, international affairs; at right is CalChamber President Allan Zaremberg.

 

 

(June 30, 2010) Mr. Masafumi Shukuri, Vice Minister of Transportation for Japan visited the CalChamber offices for meetings about High Speed Rail on the Governor's upcoming trade mission to Japan.  At left is Vice Minister Shukuri with CalChamber President & CEO Allan Zaremberg.

 

Chamber Joins Governor on Trade Mission to Japan Forum Highlights California-Japan Trade Relations

Japan Business Association Forum 

(November 29, 2007) The ever-changing business environment in California and the importance of the state’s trade with Japan received a close look recently when California Chamber of Commerce President Allan Zaremberg addressed the 14th annual gathering of the Japan Business Association of Southern California (JBA).

More than 150 guests - Japanese and American business executives who work for Japanese-affiliated companies - greeted Zaremberg and Assemblyman Chuck Devore (R-Irvine) at the November 15 forum.

Forum attendees (pictured from left) included JBA Executive Vice President and Secretary Akira Tasaki, president/chief executive officer, Mitsubishi Electric & Electronics USA, Inc.; Scott Keene, Keene and Associates; Consul General Kazuo Kodama, Consulate General of Japan, Los Angeles; Kurt Miyamoto, vice chairman of the JBA Business and Administration Committee and president/chief executive officer of Quest International LLC.; CalChamber President Allan Zaremberg; Assemblyman Chuck DeVore; Gary L. Toebben, president/chief executive officer, Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce; Professor Tayyeb Shabbir, California State University, Dominguez Hills; and Yasuyoshi Suzuki, chairman of the JBA Business and Administration Committee and vice president and regional manager, Western Region, Japan Airlines. Photo courtesy of Yuko Izumi, Lighthouse

Read the Full Article

 

Japan 2004 Trade Mission

The November 10-13, 2004 visit was the Governor’s first trade mission to promote California’s business climate, to encourage travel and tourism, and to market California-grown products. The Governor and delegation accompanying him met with business and government leaders and participated in events to promote California.

The California business delegation included:

  • Chamber President Allan Zaremberg;
  • John Koeberer, 2004 Chamber chair and owner/chief executive officer of the California Parks Companies;
  • Thomas McKernan, Chamber Board member and president and chief executive officer of the Automobile Club of Southern California;
  • John Kautz, Chamber Board member and chairman of Kautz Ironstone Vineyards;
  • Susanne Stirling, Chamber vice president of international affairs; and
  • representatives from other Chamber member companies.

 

Pictured (from left) are California Chamber of Commerce President Allan Zaremberg; Debbie Howard, president of the American Chamber of Commerce in Japan; Chamber Chair John Koeberer and Susanne Stirling, Chamber vice president of international affairs. Howard hosted lunch for the business delegation that traveled to Japan on the Governor’s trade and tourism mission.
 

 



 
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