News

  • 03 Apr 2019 11:46 AM | Anonymous

    Are you a business owner looking for a business plan tailored to the Japanese market for your market entry or business expansion? If so, take part in the Japan Market Expansion Competition (JMEC). The ANZCCJ is a proud founder and sponsor of the JMEC programme and encourages our members and the greater business community to get involved.

    As a JMEC Project Client, you can receive a professional business plan developed by some of Japan's brightest up-and-coming business leaders for a fraction of the cost of hiring outside consultants. To learn more about this opportunity, including eligibility requirements, visit the JMEC homepage at www.jmec.gr.jp. You can find the application form here: http://www.jmec.gr.jp/project-clients/apply. Project Client application deadline: November 30, Project Client Fee: ¥1,500,000. Early Bird Special application deadline: 30 September, Project Client Fee: ¥1,200,000.

    JMEC is also looking for individual applicants to participate in the program and learn how to research and develop a professional business plan. This ‘mini MBA’ style program includes classroom training with experienced executives and successful entrepreneurs as lecturers—as well as hands-on experience in writing a business plan for a real business project, submitted by a real company. Interested applicants can find more information and apply here: http://www.jmec.gr.jp/participants. Apply on-line by 15 October.

    ANZCCJ is open to receiving applications for those interested in participating but looking for sponsorship to cover the participation fee of JPY150,000. Applicants must send through details to the Executive Director, Judith Hanna, stating what they hope to get out of the opportunity and how they will use this to further the Chamber’s mission - to represent, inform and provide commercial connections for its members. The successful applicant must be Australian, New Zealand or Japanese as well as a member of the Chamber.

  • 28 Mar 2019 10:55 AM | Anonymous

    Estimated population numbers in Japan are staggering - In just over 20 years (2015-2040) the population is expected to drop from its estimated 127m to 111m, and by 2090 down to approximately 67m, according to the National Institute  of Population and Social Security Research. To address labour shortages in Japan, due to an aging population and falling birth rate, the Japanese government announced in 2018 that it will implement new residency visa statuses as early as April 2019. Currently there are 1.3m foreign workers in Japan (as of October 2017) out of a population of 2.5m foreign people, but with the decline in Japanese population, a bigger driver for more immigrants has been made. As one answer to this, the Japanese Government has established the Specified Skilled Worker(tokutei ginou, 特定技能) visa that is meant to attract more foreign workers to Japan. It covers 14 specific industries: Nursing care, building cleaning, material industry, industrial machinery manufacturing, electrical and electronic information related, construction, shipbuilding and marine equipment, automobile maintenance, aviation related, lodging, agriculture, fishery, food and beverage manufacture, restaurants. Within each category, an estimated number of acceptances for the first year of the visa being in place is 47,550 and 345,150 over the full five years that the new visa will be open for applications. Top categories expecting the greatest number of visa approvals in the first year includes: Agriculture, building cleaning, food and beverage manufacture, construction and nursing care. Overall, the nursing care industry is expected to be the largest recipient of visas granted with 60,000 over the next five years due to domestic demand. Those eligible for this visa category will need to first pass the Japanese Language Proficiency Test (JLPT) N4 or higher, or the newly introduced Japanese Language Test, and also pass the skill test which is prepared by each industry sectors. In the case of technical intern training of 3 years or more, the Japanese language test and skills test are not required. These applications shall be done abroad and also within Japan. 

    The employment contract is required to be secured before application to the District Immigration Office, after which the Certificate of Eligibility is issued and this is sent to the Japanese Embassy/Consulate to receive the visa (this visa can be up to 5 years in length). If a student within Japan, or a dependent, the N4 level exam is required, in addition to the employment contract. However the process differs, where the District Immigration Office is able to issue a new Residence Card upon permission of the Change of Status.

    There are a number of great resources online to work out how these policy options may affect you or your workforce. Numbers stated above were provided by Nakai Immigration Services LPC who held a seminar on these visa changes on 12 March. If ANZCCJ members would like a referral to some of the Chamber’s contacts who specialise on immigration/visa issues, please email info@anzccj.jpand outline your specific needs so that we can assist. 

  • 28 Mar 2019 10:52 AM | Anonymous

    Climate risks and opportunities have formed part of Rio Tinto’s strategic thinking for over two decades, and now Rio Tinto has published its first “Our approach to climate change” report, which illustrates how the company plans to contribute to and leverage the transition to a low carbon future. It uses recommendations from the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) as a framework to assess the potential risks and opportunities of climate change and related policies. Based on this, Rio Tinto has outlined four key areas where it will take actions:

    1. Supply essential metals and minerals for the transition to a low-carbon economy
    2. Reduce emissions from its own footprint
    3. Identify and assess physical risk exposures
    4. Partner to advance climate goals

    The company has reduced its emissions-intensity footprint by almost 30 percent since 2008, ahead of targets, and renewable sources produce nearly three-quarters of the electricity it uses. Rio Tinto believes the transition to a low-carbon society will be best managed through partnership between government, business and society. In 2018, it announced a new technology partnership with Alcoa, with support from Apple and the governments of Canada and Quebec, to develop aluminium smelting technology that emits oxygen in lieu of carbon - an industry first. The full report is available on Rio Tinto’s website, here.


  • 26 Mar 2019 12:00 PM | Anonymous

    The Rugby Alliance Japan event at the Conrad Tokyo, “Diversity In Rugby” emphasised how rugby can include all of society in a way that perhaps other sports cannot. Hearing Magnus Hansson, CEO of Jaguar Land Rover Japan,  share about Land Rover Japan’s initiatives ahead of RWC19 was inspiring; big businesses need to support grassroots initiatives to see change. Panelists discussed what makes rugby different from other sports. Values of respect, diversity of format, teamwork are all qualities that rugby eschews. Fiona Taag, Head of Global Sponsorship and Europe Marketing Communications of DHL, suggested that Japan could take a small leaf out of NZ’s book, saying that support to the local Japanese rugby communities will be what delivers value to the Japanese regions outside of Tokyo.  President of the Shibuya International Rugby Club and Senior Director at RWC19 Organising Committee, Koji Tokumasu, the "Godfather of Rugby in Japan" extended an invitation to any visiting rugby fans and teams, to visit grassroots, youth Shibuya International Rugby Club. Keiko Asami, World Rugby Board member and former Head Coach of Japan Rugby Women's Sevens Team said that for diversity within rugby to grow, we needed to learn to accept who we are, and move from there. She also said it would be exciting to see the Women’s Rugby World Cup in 2021 in NZ, which she expects will be another driving force for women rugby player numbers to grow in Japan. Rob Abernethy, Rugby World Cup Limited 2019 Executive Director, basically summed it up when he said diversity in rugby is about rugby being a sport for everyone – a copy of Rob's comments are included below. Thank you to the British Chamber of Commerce in Japan and Executive Director, Lori Henderson and our partners in the Rugby Alliance – the American, British, Canadian, French, Irish, Italian and South African chambers of commerce in Japan, and the Tokyo Chamber of Commerce and Industry.  As a chamber in Japan we enjoy participating and helping to drive these discussions because we care! Together we are working with the RWC19 Organising Committee and World Rugby Leadership to deliver the RWC2019 “Impact Beyond 2019” legacy. Photos provided by the British Chamber are online here.

    ラグビーワールドカップ(RWC2019)の開催までいよいよ180日を切りますます熱気が高まる中、去る326()に「ラグビーの多様性」をテーマにしたイベントが開催されました。
    ラグビーは、数あるスポーツの中でも特に壁がないスポーツであると言えるでしょう。「老若男女問わず、身体能力の差も問わず、誰でもが楽しむことのできる」―そんなラグビーの良さが、パネルディスカッションでは活発に話し合われました。
    ご登壇頂いたのは浅見敬子氏(ワールドラグビー理事、元7人制女子日本代表ヘッドコーチ)マグナス・ハンソン氏(ジャガー・ランドローバーCEO)、フィオーナ・タグ氏(DHL)、そして徳増浩司氏(渋谷インターナショナルラグビークラブ会長、ワールドカップ2019組織委員会事務総長特別補佐、アジアラグビー名誉会長)。
    互いの尊重、型の多様性、そしてチームワークといった概念がラグビーの特色であり重要な価値である。大企業が草の根の活動を積極的に支援するべきだ。地域のラグビーコミュニティをサポートすることが地方の活性化にもつながる。地元のラグビークラブの門は誰に対しても開かれているからファンもプレーヤーも気軽に訪れてほしい。―以上のような意見が登壇者から出され、最後にRWC2019ゼネラルマネージャーのロブ・アバーネシー氏が「ラグビーの多様性とは、ラグビーが全ての人を対象にしたスポーツであることに他ならない」と結びました。
    ラグビー・アライアンスのメンバーである在日英国商業会議所(BCCJ)、在日米国商工会議所(ACCJ)、在日カナダ商工会議所(CCCJ)、在日南アフリカ商工会議所(SACCJ)、在日アイルランド商工会議所(IJCC)、在日フランス商工会議所、在日イタリア商工会議所(ICCJ)、そして本イベントの共催者である東京商工会議所に感謝の意を表明します。日本の商工会議所としてRWC2019を共に盛り上げていけることを、ANZCCJ一同大変喜ばしく思っています!

    RUGBY ALLIANCE – DIVERSITY & INCLUSION – World Rugby Executive Director for RWC19, Rob Abernethy Closing Remarks

    26 March 2019

    Distinguished guests, Asami san, Shimazu san, Tokumasu san, the Rugby Alliance & joint Chamber representatives, Fiona and Magnus from our RWC 2019 Worldwide Partners DHL and Jaguar Land Rover respectively, ladies and gentlemen, friends of rugby…and friends. Good Afternoon….Konichiwa…it is my great pleasure to be here today and thank you for the opportunity to speak. My name is Rob Abernethy and I’m the RWC 2019 Executive Director based here in Tokyo working with our partner Japan Rugby 2019 to deliver the Rugby World Cup kicking off 20 September, or just 178 days from now. Firstly thank you for hosting today’s event and in turn offering another important platform for discussing Diversity and Inclusion, already a key agenda item for World Rugby and its stakeholders and supporters over some time. We believe that rugby is the perfect vehicle for inclusivity and diversity. To put it simply, World Rugby’s mission is to grow the global rugby family and vision is ‘a sport for all, true to its values’. The two statements go hand in hand – rugby is a growing, thriving, global sport because it is inclusive and fosters diversity at all levels. We are a game for all shapes and sizes – physicality’s – genders – ages and abilities from touch, to tag, to beach, sevens, tens, fifteens a side format - there is something in rugby for everyone. Rugby is the fastest-growing women’s team sport – the female fan base is growing at 6x the rate of males and for the second year in a row in 2018, more new females joined the sport than men – indeed, twice as many last year. We are proud of our work to close the gender gap. Driven by an ambitious 2017-25 Women’s game development plan, we are breaking down barriers and seizing opportunities – strengthening participation and competitions, promoting leadership and inspiring everyone to get on board. World Rugby has moved from 0% women on its Representative Council to 35% in a little over a year – progressive times indeed. We are also proud of our partnership with the International Wheelchair Rugby Federation and the shared values and projects that we are hold so dear – indeed, Japan is a trailblazer in wheelchair rugby and we will see this form of the game showcased at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics. We are also proud of our partnership with International Gay Rugby and the promotion of inclusivity and diversity projects around the world. We have heard already from the esteemed panel about the great development wins via the Impact Beyond 2019 program is delivering along with our official RWC 2019 charity, ChildFund and their Pass It Back program, the latter bringing terrific rugby and life legacy outcomes to individuals and communities not so privileged across Japan and Southeast Asia.   But none of this would be possible without purpose, people and character and that’s why I believe that the sport Rugby is a winner. We are a sport that does not just have values - of SOLIDARITY, PASSION, INTEGRITY, DISCIPLINE & RESPECT - we live them! Yes, there are always challenges, areas to improve upon or grow…that we World Rugby could do better on but we are a community that is a sum of its global grassroots to elite parts – a movement for good and I believe as it relates to us over the next 7-8 months RWC 2019 as a vehicle can further progress the sport and what is stands for here in Japan, in Asia more broadly and in doing so, around the globe. Thank you / arigato gozaimasu for the opportunity to say a few words to you today and thank you to the Rugby Alliance for hosting this event.

    Just quickly on RWC 2019 if I may:

    To date it is the most successful RWC ticketing program in RWC history! Huge international take up – 400,000 is the inbound visitation forecast, let’s hope its greater than that all can enjoy the positive benefits and impacts. Huge take up domestically not only in the big cities / 12 host cities, venues and Fan Zones  but the reach will also cover the regional areas that will also host many of the 55 Team Camps across the length and breadth of Japan. RWC 2019 will be special, it will be ever so unique, it will be a festival…it will be a celebration … a fusion of rugby and culture. Thank you all once again for your support and contribution to our cause the and the RWC 2019.


  • 20 Mar 2019 1:07 PM | Anonymous


    We hosted a breakfast to celebrate International Women’s Day on Friday 8 March at the Roppongi Hills Club. Guests were treated to views across the city and a clear image of Mt Fuji. Vice Chair, Catherine O’Connell, as MC, opened the event. The theme for the panel discussion was aligned with the global International Women’s Day designated theme, “Think Equal, Build Smart, and Innovate for Change”. In order to honour and underpin the activities undertaken by many of our members, we profiled a number of women’s photos and quotes that had been included in the Celebrating Women in Japan Twitter campaign, @womenofjapan, an initiative from ANZCCJ Chair Emeritus, Melanie Brock.

    In her opening remarks, ANZCCJ Chair, Sally Townsend, reminded us of the great history of women in leadership our Chamber has enjoyed. Melanie Brock, first female head of the Chamber, who held the position for 6.5 years and now represents ANZCCJ as our Chair Emeritus. And Catherine O’Connell, Co-Vice Chair of the Chamber, who is leading the way for women through becoming the first foreign female law practitioner to open a private firm in Japan. Sally shared her own personal connection to one of the panellist’s corporations: ‘Poppins Edu-care’. As one of Japan’s first education and care providing facilities for both early childhood and elderly support, Sally said they had been making the work-family balance for women returning to work a lot easier.  Their centres are located around large universities and corporations, for example Shiseido and Waseda University. Sally said that her own son has been enrolled at ‘Poppins’ from the age of zero, and she respects and admires the services they offer. 

    The day prior to the event Sally, our second ever female to lead our chamber, was herself breaking records. On 7 March, South Australia’s Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment, Hon. David Ridgway MLC announced Sally as the new Commissioner for the South Australia, Japan and Korea office based in Tokyo, the same day that the Minister announced the newly established South Australia trade office was opening in Tokyo, Japan.

    The Chamber was honoured to host Australian Ambassador to Japan, HE Richard Court AC, and New Zealand Ambassador to Japan, HE Stephen Payton, who jointly proposed a joint toast to “all those women who have nurtured us, inspired us and whose work for and commitment to gender equality has brought us this far along the road, and to those who will share with us the road ahead”. Ambassador Court described his background as being “brought up in a blokey environment, supported by three strong women”, highlighting the role his mother and grandmothers played in shaping his world.  Ambassador Payton remarked that this is a day to celebrate the progress that we are making towards gender equality – “a day for women to celebrate in each other’s company, and for men to remember that when women are not involved on equal terms, it is men too who miss out”.  A copy of both Ambassadors speeches is included below.

    After the breakfast, guests heard from a range of panellists including: Chief Country Officer at Deutsche Bank, Tamio Honma; Vice Chairman, Managing Director of Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Reiko Hayashi; Deputy COO, Global Development and Diversity at Suntory Holdings, Sue Gannon; and President of Poppins Corporation, Maiko Todoroki. ANZCCJ, Chair Emeritus, Melanie Brock moderated the panel. 

    Panellists provided a range of views during the session, all pointing to the morning’s theme of “Think Equal, Build Smart, and Innovate for Change”. Reiko Hayashi started off by highlighting that it is extremely important for women to have friends and a good support network. Melanie asked whether Reiko had sensed any change in the last several years about International Women’s Day or the celebration of women in Japan. Reiko indicated that whilst Japan has been changing, more change is needed as an aging population is now becoming the next issue putting pressure on women and their careers. She said that there is more awareness of opportunities for women to succeed, however, citing the fact that junior high school students now have the chance to attend career days at her firm, as one example. This opportunity was not available when Reiko was young, with the added expectation at that time, that girls needed to grow and learn to become good wives and mothers. However, Reiko observed in recent years that girls were now very ambitious and keen to know what’s going on in the world.

    Next, Melanie introduced Maiko Todoroki, who commented on government support for women in Japan. Maiko stated that we cannot rely solely on the government to bring about change for women. She used her company, Poppins, as an example of a change agent. Through providing nursery and care services for both children and the elderly, Poppins hoped to make it easier for women to return to work and maintain their careers. Although the government offers nursery services, it was perceived as being ‘welfare’ within Japan, and Poppins had to change that mindset. For this reason, Poppins branded their services as ‘educare’, being a care service that also offers beneficial educational opportunities. To learn more about Poppins, go online here: https://www.poppins.co.jp/

    From another perspective, Melanie asked Sue Gannon on her thoughts surrounding challenges facing women in Japan. Sue said that over her nearly two years in Japan and working for Suntory Holdings, she would agree with Melanie, that as foreigners we can’t come to Japan and preach to Japanese women. She said foreign women were placed in a different category than Japanese women in the workplace (where both were facing different challenges). Over her time working with Suntory University, Sue said she has been focusing on emerging young women. Her aim is to change the existing perspective that women have to choose between a career and family life.

    Melanie emphasised that it is important to cater towards Japanese women’s needs in the workplace, but asked panellists, what further could be done. Tamio Honma said that female colleagues in Japan have a somewhat different perspective from females in Taiwan, Hong Kong, China and Singapore. In these other Asian countries, there is less stigma surrounding women who get help to care for their children. However, there is an expectation for women in Japan to be ‘perfect’ and there is a great deal of guilt if they are to reach out for assistance. Tamio said we need to change this perspective by creating established role models to show female employees that they don’t have to be perfect, or that there is anything wrong with reaching out for help. Deutsche Bank Japan has been very successful in celebrating women and has elected three women into management positions within the last 5 years. Two of the three women have taken maternity leave. This supports the notion that it is ok to balance a family and a career. 

    Melanie then opened the floor for questions. Regional Director at Edelman Japan, Deborah Hayden, when raising the issue of unconscious bias, gave the example that a man who could be considered bossy, is instead considered to be assertive and/or showing his leadership skills, however, a bossy woman is just seen as being bossy. She asked how this could change. Sue answered that, in Japan, the choices of adjectives for women are an example, like elsewhere of ‘conscious bias’. However, as she went on to say, most people are completely unaware that they are doing this. She suggested we need to talk about this issue more to help people understand the image it is reinforcing. We need companies to provide support for women so they can feel confident to speak up. 

    Another question was raised about elevating men’s position as active fathers at home. The panellists agreed that particularly young men are becoming involved in parenting. Melanie said that she’d often seen dads at the park with their children on Sundays and that young fathers were playing a bigger and more prominent role in parenting but agreed we still have a long way to go.

    Melanie finished the session thanking both panellists and the audience, adding that she believes everyone has a role to play in changing attitudes and perceptions about women and this was just the beginning.  In his closing, Matthew Walker, ANZCCJ’s Executive Council member, said that as a father of an eight-year-old daughter, he too understood that there is still a long way to go in terms of unconscious biases and that no man was impervious to under-representation and other issues facing women in the workplace - it would impact the future work environment for our wives and daughters. 

    Our IWD2019 event attracted as many as 80 attendees and was one of the Chamber’s most successful events in terms of attendee participation. Guests posed a number of engaging questions from the floor, and as one of the panelists mentioned “as women, we need to build connections and support networks”. As a Chamber we hope to facilitate and encourage discussion that will deepen our understanding and work together to change our work environments toward positive change. The engagement by both female and male attendees and presenters created a diverse and open-minded environment in which we could challenge issues surrounding women in Japan. Attendees were able to take home a positive message and motivation to make a change, but it is now up to the Chamber and our stakeholders to keep the discussion and momentum going.

    We are delighted to have had the support of Erika Itaki, Overseas Department Marketing Manager at Lapidem Inc, who attended the event and also provided some small gifts for our attendees. Lapidem is a female founded and run business in Tokyo, based on an ethos that keeping the balance of life will maintain your health. You can learn more about Lapidem online at https://lapidem.co.jp/. We thank Lapidem and Ms Itaki for their support.

    This event was a part of ANZCCJ’s Diversity & Inclusion event series. On 26 March, the Rugby Alliance Chambers will host a panel discussion, “Diversity in Rugby” with rugby industry representatives. The focus of the event will be on the growing need and importance of diversity in rugby, both on and off the field.

    ANZCCJ International Women’s Day Event: Official Speech from Australian Ambassador to Japan, HE Richard Court AC

    I was one of five boys in our family. On one hand, you could say I was raised in a very blokey environment. On the other hand, you could say I was raised by one very strong woman, my mother, supported by my two grandmothers- that was the case. These five boys went on to have many children, predominantly daughters. Those daughters have thrived in Australia where they have had many opportunities and choices to succeed in different walks of life.

    International Women’s Day is an opportunity for us to say thank you to those people who are making it possible for woman around the world to have more choices and options.

    ANZCCJ International Women’s Day Event: Official Speech from New Zealand Ambassador to Japan, HE Stephen Payton

    Kia ora and good morning. Thank you to the Chamber for hosting this event and for inviting Ambassador Court and I to propose this toast. This is a day to celebrate the progress that we are making towards gender equality, with the #MeToo movement and other developments. It is a day for women to celebrate in each other’s company, and for men to remember that when women are not involved on equal terms, it is men too who miss out. We miss out on the company of women, on the insights of women and on the power of women. At an event in the New Zealand Parliament this morning, the New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has joined the celebrations, but she has also reminded New Zealanders that in New Zealand too there is still a long way to go.  And she has told her audience that they should not underestimate the impact that each individual can have on the women and men around them, in their households, in their communities and in their workplaces, with what they do and what they say about gender equality.  We all have our part to play.

    So let us raise a toast: To all those women who have nurtured us, inspired us and whose work for and commitment to gender equality has brought us this far along the road, and to those who will share with us the road ahead, Happy International Women’s Day.


  • 19 Mar 2019 11:53 AM | Anonymous


    On 19 March, Fonterra spoke to ANZCCJ members and guests about their journey in Japan. Neville Falkner, General Manager (Marketing and Development) at Fonterra, who has worked for the large dairy collective for 19 years including 5 years at Fonterra Japan (the rest of his time was spent in NZ) spoke on a number of areas.  

    Fonterra is one of the top five dairy companies in the world and its contribution to New Zealand’s economy is huge, with 22,000 employees around the world and making up to 25% of NZ’s exports. There are some important market trends in Japan that Fonterra in Japan has been focusing on. This includes: The milk supply gap in domestic production, increased demand for healthy dairy products due to an increasingly aging society, and overall higher health consciousness in the population. Due to a steady increase in dairy consumption and decrease in the number of Japanese dairy farmers, the gap between supply and demand for dairy products in Japan is getting wider. To expand its sales in Japan and contribute to Japanese society, Fonterra has made several products that meet the Japanese population’s nutritional needs – for more details of the Fonterra products in Japan as well as the trend in Japanese society please refer to the PPT attached to the ANZCCJ FAHC Minutes here.

    Correcting consumers’ misperceptions and increasing market awareness around grass-fed versus grain-fed cows/dairy are also key things Fonterra has been working on. They have joined expos and collaborated with government organisations and other companies as well to try and educate consumers, but there needs to be some sensitivity to how the local market could respond if grass-fed is promoted too strongly as the healthier alternative.

    Fonterra does have a retail presence in Japan – for example there are several shops selling Kapiti products open in Tokyo now and they are trying to promote the brand here in Japan. This is an NZ iconic brand but not Fonterra’s export brand – how to expand the business to retail in Japan is an ongoing challenge for Fonterra in Japan, but they are looking for further opportunities. One thing Neville added was that Fonterra (like other Australian and NZ companies) cannot expect the Japanese to come looking to find out who they are, saying “it’s our job to let them know about us”. See the website for more details on where to buy this product: https://www.kapiti.jp/now-available-in-japan.html.

    A more detailed report of this meeting is available for ANZCCJ Member's only, including a copy of Neville's presentation.


  • 15 Mar 2019 5:45 PM | Anonymous

    Today, Friday 15 March has been a dark day for New Zealand. The attacks in Christchurch can only be described as sickening and evil, and all of us at the ANZCCJ sincerely send our love and thoughts out to those who were affected by this tragedy. New Zealand is an unlikely target for this form of violence, and today’s events have shaken both the nation and the world.

    In addressing the public, New Zealand Prime Minister the Rt Hon Jacinda Ardern has stated that, “We New Zealanders were not chosen for this act of violence because we condone this racism, or because we are an enclave of extremism, we were chosen for the very fact that we are none of these things”.

    We must not let this hate divide us. Instead we must urge New Zealanders to band together with love and support for one another.

    Kia kaha Christchurch.


  • 13 Mar 2019 3:45 PM | Anonymous


    On 4 March, ANZCCJ Executive Director presented to the New Zealand UN Youth Globalisation Tour Delegation about the economic links and connections between Japan and New Zealand. The delegation consisted of 14 university students from all around New Zealand, including the University of Otago, the University of Auckland, Massey University, Lincoln University and Victoria University.

    The presentation began with a basic summary of the ANZCCJ, including its history, roles and responsibilities, and the industries it covers. Judith mentioned that although New Zealand meat and dairy is popular in the Japanese market, it is important that the Chamber boosts awareness surrounding other industries, such as education. The next slide displayed a map-like graph, highlighting the key NZ corporations in Japan and how they compare to one another. Judith also brushed on the important programmes that build Japan-NZ cultural links, such as the JET programme and recommended programmes like these as a great opportunity for students to discover Japan, and one day build a career in or related to Japan. The presentation finished with an overview of ANZCCJ’s members and Chamber activities as well as how NZ SME’s were operating in Japan.

    After the presentation, and during discussions, one thing that the UN Youth delegation highlighted was some of the key differences between their perception of Japan (and how NZ is viewed in Japan) with other Asian nations. The delegation’s tour included Singapore, Jakarta, Ho Chi Min, Guangzhou and Shanghai, from which they said there were views there that NZ’s ‘Pure’ brand was still a very effective marketing technique and will continue to be used (and pushed more strongly) in those nations. However, visiting Japan, it became clearer that there was a real need to re-develop NZ’s brand in order to appeal to the Japanese market. The delegation agreed that NZ should focus on kiwi ingenuity when promoting our brand, and highlight areas such as DIY, innovation, and R&D. Judith agreed that, in her own personal opinion, NZ needs to have a clear vision when creating a brand, such as being an open space for technological developments, including on things that would transfer NZ's knowledge and ultimately ‘pure’ brand to the world.

    Contrasting these issues, some negative aspects surrounding Kiwi culture were raised and discussed. One problem discussed was the continuous ‘Tall Poppy Syndrome’ in NZ, particularly in smaller towns, which stifles creativity. Delegates thought that NZ should learn how to correctly acknowledge and celebrate other’s achievements and be proud of their own accomplishments as well, in order to breed further innovation. Another issue was the need to talk honestly and openly about minority inequality in NZ. As Asian-New Zealanders, some delegates had encountered various forms of racism and tokenism back in NZ, including in the major cities. All ethnic minorities, and well as the LGBT community, needed to be protected in a more inclusive and welcoming environment. Everyone agreed, that if NZ can’t determine and accept its own national identity (which had shifted a lot in the last 30-40 years), it would continue to be difficult to develop and market a single national brand overseas.

    In conclusion, Judith drew attention to the ‘three Es’ that she thinks would help to revive Pure NZ’s brand: Equality, Energy and ‘Ennovation’. New Zealand must represent these values to show our authenticity and value of diversity; our quality of life advantages; and our progress in the fields of sustainable tourism and education.


  • 13 Mar 2019 10:24 AM | Anonymous


    Ahead of Japan hosting the Paralympics in 2020, On 5 March 2019, the ANZCCJ held a Sports for Business (SFB) meeting with special guest, Paralympic wheelchair runner, Jun Hiromichi. The SFB committee members and guest attendees were able to enjoy an inspiring talk and discussion with the sportsman. Jun participates in mainly category T53 wheelchair racing events and has been competing in Paralympic sporting for 28 years.

    Jun’s story began at the age of 15, when he was involved in a motorcycle accident that left him paralysed and unable to walk again. Despite being faced with new challenges, Jun said that he was able to maintain a positive mindset. He was lucky to have survived the accident and this, in Jun’s perspective, was another chance to live, and another opportunity to become a better person.

    At the time of the accident, there was very limited information and representation of paraplegic sports in Japan. Most people believed that individuals with disabilities were not capable of doing anything, and this contributed greatly to the stigma and underrepresentation of the minority. However, Jun became aware of other paraplegic athletes at the age of 17 and was inspired to become a racer. Only one and a half years after the accident, in 1994 at the Boston Marathon, Jun competed in his first race. This made Jun the first professional wheelchair runner in Japan.

    Jun gained a strong motivation to learn English and to become a top athlete after meeting the world champion at that time, Jim Knaub, from California. Jim went on to become Jun’s mentor and was able to share his experiences as how to improve his technique and seek sponsorships. This help, and Jun’s own determination, enabled him to compete in the Sydney 2000, Athens 2004, Beijing 2008 and London 2012 Summer Paralympics, winning a silver medal in Sydney and a bronze medal in Athens, and placing 7th in London – all in the 800m race. On top of this, Jun won bronze in 2002 at the World Championships in Lille, France.

    Racing bike chairs are handmade, with the main frame and wheel cases being made of carbon fibre. The typical cost ranges between US$6000-8000, depending on the quality of the frame you choose. Often athletes and their families are left to self-fund their travel and equipment, with only a small number of companies willing to sponsor. The number of sponsors for paraplegic athletes is significantly lower than that of other athletes. With respect to sponsorship surrounding Paralympic athletes, Jun said that because Paralympians do not receive as much broadcasting coverage of its athletes, the advertising benefits and exposure to sponsors was limited, especially compared with major sports and tournaments like the Olympics. This is an issue in the industry, but often Corporate Social Responsibility-initiatives are the motive behind some companies who decide to sponsor Paralympic athletes. Jun’s main sponsor is Puma Japan, but he is also supported by Nippon Rent A Car, Mandom and OGK KABUTO.

    In addition to his sporting achievements, Jun has won a number of awards within Japan -including the Oita Prefectural Medal and the Prime Minister’s Award for his participation in the local community. Jun holds various lectures, talk shows, coaching clinics, and is an active guest commentator on radio and TOS TV Oita with OBS Oita Broadcasting. Prior to this, Jun has served as a council committee member of the Japan Para Athletics Federation. He has also worked as the director of the Paralympians Association of Japan and executive director of Sports of Heart. It is brilliant to see such a great sportsman representing minority groups in Japan.

    A copy of the minutes from the SFB meeting – for ANZCCJ members- can be found online here.



  • 07 Mar 2019 12:00 PM | Anonymous


    On 7 March, His Excellency the Honourable Hieu Van Le AC, Governor of South Australia; Hon. David Ridgway MLC, Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment; Mr Kazuyoshi Matsunaga, Consul-General of Japan to VIC, TAS and SA and the Australian Ambassador to Japan, HE Richard Court AC, opened the South Australian trade & investment office. Later that day, Commissioner, South Australia - Japan and Korea was announced, which we were delighted to hear would be our very own Chair, Sally Townsend. The new office will be co-located in the Australian Embassy alongside Austrade.  The office will cover the North East Asia Region – including Korea – which accounts for more than $1.07 billion a year in SA exports. Minister Ridgway said the office was the second to be opened by the Marshall Government as part of its $12.8 million investment, following the establishment of the Shanghai, China, office in November last year. The official press release can be found onlinehere. An official reception was hosted at Happo-en to mark the occasion. Guests were treated to a beautiful 3-course meal matched perfectly with South Australian wine, a sake barrel breaking ceremony, as well as a tuna carving demonstration and when it came time to leave, guests were given a goodie bag of South Australian treats including Haigh’s chocolate and Penfolds wine. Guests included Japan Chamber of Commerce and Industry Chair and Tokyo Chamber of Commerce and Industry Chair, Dr Akio Mimura, and Australian Ambassador to Japan, HE Richard Court AC, as well as representatives from the SA sister prefecture, Okayama, and a large contingent of Tokyo and South Australian business representatives ANZCCJ’s Executive Council together with some industry representatives met with South Australian government and business representatives on 7 March ahead of the official opening of South Australia’s trade office in Tokyo later that day. As part of the lunch meeting, which was hosted at the Park Hyatt, we met with South Australian Governor HE the Hon. Hieu Van Le; Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment Hon. David Ridgway MLC; Consul-General of Japan to VIC, TAS and SA, Kazuyoshi Matsunaga; Deputy Chief Executive, Department for Trade, Tourism and Investment (DTTI), Megan Antcliff; CEO, Food SA, Catherine Sayer; CEO, Australian Southern Bluefin Tuna Industry Association, Brian Jeffriess AM; CEO, 

    AusVeg SA, Jordan Brooke-Barnett; Chair, AusVeg SA, Kingsley Songer; Director, Low Carbon Economy Unit, Department for Energy and Mining, Richard Day; Official Secretary to the Governor of SA, Mr Hugh Borrowman; and Chief of Staff to Minister Ridgway, Scott Kompo-Harms.

    The South Australian (SA) delegation enlightened us with their trade and economic priorities, including with respect to Japan and their plans to diversify SA’s offerings to the international market. What stood out from the meeting was the overwhelming sense that SA had a strong story to tell in Japan, for example, 80% of Australia’s wine is produced in SA, 90% of Australia’s tuna output is from SA and it hosts the world’s largest li-ion batteries, drawing large international investments from companies like Tesla and NEC. Telling this story would be an important task for the new SA office.

    Some common themes discussed at the lunch included:

    -The need to raise SA’s profile in Japan, as well as SA contributing to the over-arching Australia brand on the ground and in the regions of Japan;

    -Attracting Japanese investment into SA as a priority – and a key way to approach this will be SA looking at a range of possible investors;

    -SA considering Japanese partners as more than investment sources, but considering what know-how, and other partnerships they could potentially tap into within the investment relationship; and

    -The compelling renewable energy story in SA also needed to be shared. SA had a number of successful case studies which has put SA on the map as “the renewable energy state of Australia”. This has left further food for thought as 

    the Chamber works to change perceptions of Australian trade offerings to the Japanese market, and with renewable energies being a priority industry focus area for Australia and Japan as well as our chamber.

    A number of important points were made throughout the meeting, but a key message our chamber delivered to the SA side was that this was the right time for SA to open this office: With a number of high profile events raising Japan’s profile further within the international business community; and Japan’s efforts to open itself up further to the international community with changes in immigration rules, and greater free trade access through FTAs. We also conveyed how important this office would be in offering a gateway for SA companies to learn more about the Japanese market and tap into commercial partnership and investment opportunities here. Without a presence, relationships can’t be fully built and maintained in Japan. We are also glad to 

    see that the new Commissioner, South Australia – Japan, Korea, will be our very own Chair, Sally Townsend. The office officially opened on 7 March, with a ribbon cutting ceremony (photos below – in document), where the office will be co-located within Austrade. Sally started in the role on 18 March.



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