Apr 2019

China and Japan on the same page?

I wish it were not the case but politics and investing go hand in hand. As a savvy investor, you must pay attention to politics. What is going on in the country you invest in? Who outside of that country can affect change? What will the ripple effects of decisions made internally and far afield affect the investment appetite and opportunity?

Until recently Japan has been very insular. Japanese politicians have been slow to see the need to internationalise at home and welcome ideas from abroad. In my 18 years here I have seen a slow glacial pace change but a change. Japan is accepting more and more change. This week I went to my local noodle shop and the entire staff, 6 in total were Vietnamese! Unremarkable outside of Japan but this is a big deal here. The staff were courteous, welcoming and spoke fluent Japanese. Seamlessly slipping back into their native tongue to pass orders up and down the noodle line. I was impressed with the workers and happy to see the customers not batting an eyelid at the scene.

And so I read this weeks featured article from WRAL.com with great interest. It seems that Japan is reaching out to China, not an easy thing for either side!

Japan has identified closer ties with China as a potential to push a joint economical agenda at a time when the World’s economy is missing direction. It is an obvious move but without understanding the history between these two countries, it is hard to understand the gravity of the talks. It could indeed be beneficial to both sides and I will be watching the initiative with interest.

How can this benefit investors in Japan? Stability, one of the key investment criteria we at JPI continuous promote. A friendlier relationship between China and Japan will better enhance the stability in the region and would certainly benefit both countries. Let’s hope for a positive outcome.

Read the full article here.