• 12 Jun 2014 3:47 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Lessons Learned from 2014 Lean Manufacturing Study Tour


    Interest in lean manufacturing, and the potential benefits of improved productivity, quality, safety and employee welfare, has been growing over the past decade within Australian and New Zealand industry.


    Those of us who were fortunate to be present at the ANZCCJ’s 2012 Gala Dinner will recall the excellent address given by Sam Walsh, CEO of Rio Tinto, on lean mining, and the application of lean principles within the resources industry. Sam spoke of the laser-like focus that Japan’s automotive industry has on value and efficiency. He also impressed upon the gathering that this same focus, together with a concentrated intent to eliminate variation and waste from every stage of production, was applicable to a wide range of industries.


    The Australian Industry Group Lean Japan Tour was held during the 18th through 24th of May in Tokyo and Nagoya, with the aim of showcasing the rich history that Japanese industry has in the fields of lean manufacturing, industrial engineering and continuous improvement (kaizen). The tour has been an annual initiative of the Australian Industry Group and ANZCCJ member Shinka Management for the past eight years and is designed to provide companies with lean training and first-hand experience of the world-class application of lean manufacturing within Japanese industry.


    This year’s tour group comprised 13 industry professionals from Australia and New Zealand. During the week-long study tour participants learned about the implementation of lean manufacturing and kaizen in some of Japan’s top companies. Participants experienced seminars on lean manufacturing and operations analysis, and several factory tours.


    The factory tours and reception provided by the host companies throughout the week were excellent. Isuzu Corporation (Metal One Group), which specialises in the process and sales of cold rolled steel was a standout in terms of the company’s dedication to employee welfare and motivation, and their efficient use of space within their service centres. The tour group was impressed by the level of excellence on display in terms of productivity and organisation within Isuzu’s immaculate Gifu Service Centre.



    Inoac, a world-leading innovator and producer of polyurethane, plastic, rubber and composite materials, was another standout visit. The company provided a warm reception, and led the group on a tour of the company’s Anjo plant prior to a discussion with several members of their senior management team regarding their production management systems and kaizen activities.


    Two days of the tour were dedicated to lean training at a Toyota Group lean training centre. The group developed their understanding of the Toyota Production System (TPS) during their stay, and in addition to classroom and hands-on training, experienced TPS in action on the floor of a vehicle assembly plant and through visits and management discussions with two Toyota Group suppliers. The application of Just-In-Time manufacturing, visual management, supplier development and kanban systems were all covered.



    The tour also included visits to two multinational companies applying lean principles within the food and beverage industry. Kikkoman, famous for its excellence in R&D and innovation in the production and distribution of soy sauce, was the tour group’s first visit. In addition to a plant tour, a management discussion was held with Kikkoman staff presenting on two of their recent kaizen projects.

    ITO EN, the world leader in production and distribution of green tea products, was the group’s final visit. The tour included ITO EN’s R&D and quality control labs, tea processing and packaging, and their new coffee roasting facility for their Tully’s Coffee brand. The group met with representatives from ITO EN’s production division responsible for administering the company’s kaizen and employee suggestion schemes.


    In addition to learning about Japanese management philosophy and productivity practices, the tour group spent the week immersed in Japanese culture, received training on Japanese business etiquette, and experienced local food, drink, entertainment and customs.



    The group was joined by Misako Kitaoka, Executive Director, and Andrew Peyton, Executive Council Member, who represented ANZCCJ at the farewell dinner for the tour group. The participants were delighted to have representatives from Austrade and ANZCCJ member company WINTEX join us on the evening as well.



    The tour was led by lean consultants Shinka Management, in conjunction with the Australian Industry Group and Simply Lean Business Solutions. A second Lean Japan Tour is scheduled for this year, to be held during the 9th through 15th November 2014. For further details see the Lean Study Mission page.

  • 05 Jun 2014 3:29 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Congratulations to 2014-2015 ANZCCJ Executive Council Members!

    2014 Annual General Meeting was held at the Australian Embassy on 4 June. The meeting attracted 31 guests and was opened with a welcome by the Australian Ambassador to Japan Mr Bruce Miller.

    ANZCCJ Chair Melanie Brock went on to present the Chair's Message, highlighting the Chamber's achievements in membership growth as well as the developemnts in the trade relations between Australia/New Zealand and Japan, including the visit of the Australian Prime Minister, the Hon.Tony Abbott in April 2014. The Chair thanked all sponsors and members for their dedicated support for the Chamber.

    Treasurer Ryann Thomas reported the Financial Statement 2013-2014, highlighting membership growth and efficient management of accounts receivable, made possible with the launch of new website and database.

    2014-2015 ANZCCJ Executive Council Members were officially announced by the Executive Director Misako Kitaoka. Five new members are set to serve two-year terms (2014-2016) and seven members are set to continue the second year of their two year terms (2013-2015). In addition, Melanie Brock has been appointed as Chair, Andrew Gauci and Nick Mudge as Vice Chair for the term 2014-2015.

    2014-2016 Executive Council Members

    Nevin Amos (NZ)                     Comvita Japan Company Ltd
    Ed Cole (AU)                           Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer                              

    Peter Davis (AU)                      Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Ltd
    Andrew Peyton (AU)                Horitomi Commercial and Industrial Inc

    Nobi Yamaji (JP)                      Rio Tinto Japan Ltd

    Continuing Executive Council Members 2013-2015

    Melanie Brock (AU)                 Crown Resorts

    Andrew Gauci (AU)                  Lend Lease

    Nick Mudge (NZ)                     Tourism New Zealand 

    Damien Roberts (AU)               Ashurst                                                

    Craig Saphin (AU)                    en world Japan K.K.                            

    Ryann Thomas (NZ)                PricewaterhouseCoopers       
    Kohei Tsushima (JP)                National Australia Bank                                                


  • 29 May 2014 1:44 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Tourism New Zealand Media Release

    New Zealand – the most exciting place to learn a new language

    Last Updated on: 28 May 2014


    Photo credit: Julian Aspe

    Giving international students the chance to experience the exhilarating adventure New Zealand is famous for while they study is the aim of the first joint marketing campaign Tourism New Zealand and Education New Zealand launched on May 26 in Japan.

    The two agencies have joined forces to attract young Japanese to New Zealand with the offer of up to $300 worth of adventure activities.

    Every student who enrols with one of the 26 English Language Schools taking part in the campaign will get to experience some of the best adventures New Zealand has to offer. Activities range from a bungy jump in Queenstown to a jet boat ride on Auckland's magnificent harbour. The campaign will run through to June.

    Tourism New Zealand's Chief Executive Kevin Bowler says international students contribute significant tourism dollars to the country by travelling during their study, and hosting their friends and family.

    "The education market is a significant one, so it makes perfect sense for us to combine our efforts, and leverage the combined strength of the New Zealand brand as both an education and tourism destination, to convert more students to travel and study here."

    Grant McPherson, Chief Executive, Education New Zealand says this campaign is a great example of the education-tourism opportunities which exist in New Zealand.

    "Tourism New Zealand's flagship campaign 100% Pure New Zealand tells the story of this country's unparalleled combination of landscapes, people and activities. "New Zealand is one of the highest quality English language education destinations in the world but it is our setting which really makes us stand out from the crowd so it makes a lot of sense for the two agencies to join forces on a marketing campaign. I am excited to see the results."

    The campaign challenges Japanese students already thinking about studying in New Zealand to take the next step and convert their general interest into actual enrolment.

    Japan is currently New Zealand's fourth largest source country for international students but there is potential to grow this market further. The Japanese government has an increased focus on international education and improving English language skills in the lead up to hosting the 2019 Rugby World Cup and the 2020 Summer Olympics. ENZ is working on realising that opportunity.

    There are plans to roll out similar campaigns in other countries including Brazil in the coming months.

    For the original release, please click here.

  • 12 May 2014 3:09 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Survey on Australians living and working in Asia



    Conducted by:

    'Asia Literacy: Language and Beyond'

    ACOLA Securing Australia's Future Program



    As part of the 'Asia Literacy: Language and Beyond' Project, The Australian Council of Learned Academies (ACOLA) is conducting a survey to investigate Australian expats’ reason for, and experiences of, living and working in Asia. The project is of considerable national importance, and is part of the Securing Australia’s Future program, under the ACOLA. The results of this survey will help to strengthen Asia-Australia relations and increase Australia’s prospects in Asia by improving the way its education system fosters Asia literacy.



    The survey (link below) takes about 15-20 minutes to complete, and is totally confidential, with only the aggregate data used.





    Deadline: 23 May 2014.


  • 28 Apr 2014 4:24 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    APEC Business Travel Card New Criteria Fact Sheet


    What is APEC Business Travel Card?
    The Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Business Travel Card scheme is an important initiative that commenced permanent operations in March 1999. This scheme is for business people to gain streamlined entry to other economies. It contributes to APEC's goal of free and open trade within the Asia-Pacific region. Through a single application form, the scheme allows accredited business people to obtain an APEC Business Travel Card for multiple short-term visits to other APEC economies over a three year period. About the size of a credit card, the APEC Business Travel Card is valid for three years and allows the holder to stay for two or three months in an APEC economy that is a full member of the scheme. This saves business people time and effort involved in applying for individual visas or entry permits each time they want to travel for business. The scheme also provides cardholders with access to fast track immigration processing lanes at major airports in participating economies.
    For more information on APEC Business Travel Card, please visit:

    APEC Business Travel Card New Criteria
    On 1 November 2012 Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) announced the commencement of Stage 2 of the new APEC Business Travel Card eligibility criteria. Stage 2 of the criteria relates to the requirement that every business entity that seeks to utilise Australia’s APEC Business Travel Card for its employees must establish that it is engaged in international trade or investment in the APEC region. A business is engaged in international trade or investment if it meets one of the following requirements:

    -       The business is listed in the current Forbes Global 2000 business list
    -       The business has received an Export Market Development Grant (EMDG) from Austrade in the past five years
    -       The business has been a finalist in the Australian Export Awards in the past five years
    -       The business has been certified by an ‘approved body’
    DIAC has named two ‘approved bodies’, Australian Industry Group (Ai Group) and Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI), to provide this business certification.

    Business certification will be assessed on three criteria:
    -       The business is lawfully registered in the economy in which it is operating and has provided clear evidence of this
    -       business is engaged in trade and / or investment in the APEC region and there is clear evidence of this and
    -       If the business is a start-up operation, there is clear evidence of viability, sound business planning, market research and product/s or services to be traded.

    For more information on the new eligibility criteria, please visit:

     Should you wish to apply for business certification, application forms can be found at:
    Ai Group


    How Can ANZCCJ Help

    Part of the business certification application with either the ACCI or the Ai Group includes listing a business association as a referee for verification of your business.
    -       The AZCCJ is a recognised business association that you are able to list as a referee on applications submitted to AIG or ACCI.           

    -       The ANZCCJ will also assist in the provision of a letter of support which, as suggested by the respective approved bodies, can assist start-up operations validate their business operations, in addition to strengthening the application for existing companies.

    To be considered for the letter, we require that member applicant
    Ø  is a Platinum, Gold, Silver or Bronze member
    Ø  has 3 Years of continuing membership with the ANZCCJ if Bronze member
    Ø  submits a copy of a Japanese registration certificate (tokibo tohon)
    Ø  submits corporate brochure and other materials if any
    Ø  submits business certification application


    Will the ANZCCJ always be able to provide the necessary reference?
    ANZCCJ will consider all requests to act as a referee on their merits. There may be some occasions where for various reasons (e.g. the members not being in good standing with regards to fees etc.) where we are unable to provide the necessary reference but in principle we would expect to be able to act as referee on most occasions.
    My business is not registered in Australia, is it still eligible?
    Yes, applicants must prove that “the business is lawfully registered in the economy in which it is operating and has provided clear evidence of this”. This evidence would include an overseas business registration certificate.
    I am a foreigner working for an approved company, am I still eligible for an APEC Business Travel Card?
    DIAC who administer the APEC Business Travel Card applications in Australia will only process applications for Australian citizens.

    How do we apply through ACCI when they advise to contact relevant Australian State based Chambers?
    ACCI have delegated the process of applications to their State based affiliates. For foreign based companies ANZCCJ has been advised that members are to apply through the State organisation most convenient for you.
    My parent company is registered in a country outside of APEC, are they eligible for certification?
    You need to prove that you are lawfully operating business operations in APEC and show that you are trading goods between APEC economies.
    How long will business certification take?
    It is expected business certification should take 5-10 days. Please note applications for both new and renewal APEC cards can take up to 6 months.
    For any further questions, please contact ANZCCJ Secretariat at 03-6234-9351.

  • 17 Apr 2014 12:31 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    Dear ANZCCJ Member,

    The Foreign Chambers in Japan (FCIJ) Business Confidence Survey has become a widely accepted bi-annual barometer for the sentiments of foreign business leaders in Japan, their views on the Japanese economy, and their own business performance.

    Since the survey's inception in the Spring of 2002, the results (published at have been a valuable tool not only for chambers and related embassies to assess the business climate, but also for the business and research community at large.

    The 25th survey (Spring 2014) has begun. By completing it you will have the privilege of real-time access to the raw survey results, and if you provide your e-mail address, you will be among the first to receive the results after analysis.

    The survey is brief -- seven compulsory questions in all -- and we hope that you will cooperate with us in this project as so many of you have done before.

    To complete the survey, visit:

    Between opening the page and pressing "submit," it should not require more than five minutes of your time!

    The deadline for your input to be included in the results is Friday, April 25.

    This survey is supported by Finnair and Asian Tigers Mobility.

    Thank you for your cooperation.

    Misako Kitaoka
    Executive Director
  • 10 Apr 2014 9:53 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)
    New Zealand Embassy now has an improved website with information on New Zealand's vibrant economy including tourism, technology and more. Please stay connected!

    (New Zealand Embassy, Japan)

    The official travel New Zealand website    Elections for the United Nations Security Council  Sister cities
  • 08 Apr 2014 5:10 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)



    ANZCCJ Welcomes Australia-Japan Free Trade Agreement



    8 April, 2014 --- The Australian and New Zealand Chamber of Commerce in Japan (ANZCCJ) welcomes the conclusion of the negotiations of a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between Australia and Japan.


    Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and visiting Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott reached a broad accord on a bilateral economic partnership agreement (EPA).


    Prime Minister Abe said, “I’m really glad that the broad agreement was reached in the EPA negotiations. The Japan-Australia EPA is an extremely important framework to promote trade and investment.”


    Abbott said the trade agreement is very important for prosperity of Japan and Australia. He added that the accord was finalised because both countries have maintained a close relationship.


    Upon the conclusion of the FTA negotiations, Melanie Brock, Chair of the ANZCCJ, shares the positive sentiment among the Australian business community in Japan.


    “This is an important step for Australia and Japan. It will seek to enhance an already strong business trading relationship and create further opportunities for the business community, both in Australia and Japan.


    The Chamber acknowledges the Australian Embassy, the negotiators and all those who helped to bring about this historic development.”






    About the ANZCCJ

    The Australian and New Zealand Chamber of Commerce in Japan (ANZCCJ) was established in 1991 to promote the development of commerce between Australia and Japan, and New Zealand and Japan. It is a non-profit organization with approximately 600 members. ANZCCJ’s mission is to play a constructive and meaningful role in developing Australia/New Zealand-Japan business by providing members with an effective source of information, representation and commercial connections.


    Media Contact Name: Misako Kitaoka
    Phone: 03-6234-9351


  • 04 Apr 2014 11:20 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Visit to Japan of The Hon Tony Abbott, Prime Minister of the Commonwealth of Australia

    March 28, 2014

    1. 1. The Hon. Tony Abbott, Prime Minister of the Commonwealth of Australia will pay an Official Visit to Japan from the late night of 5, April Saturday to the early morning of 8, April Tuesday, 2014. The Prime Minister’s program of events will take place on 6, April Sunday and 7, April Monday.

      2. During his stay in Japan, the Prime Minister will be received in audience by His Majesty the Emperor of Japan. Mr. Shinzo Abe, Prime Minister of Japan, will also hold a meeting and host a dinner with the Prime Minister.

      3. The Government of Japan sincerely welcomes the visit of the Prime Minister, which will further strengthen the friendly relations between Japan and the Commonwealth of Australia.

    (* The foregoing is a provisional translation. The above date denotes the date of the issue of the original press release in Japanese.)
  • 31 Mar 2014 5:17 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Dear ANZCCJ Members and Supporters,

    We are pleased to announce that the ANZCCJ has refreshed its website to provide better information and usability for our members. With automated functions, our members can manage personal profile, invoices and payments online. The new vibrant and interactive design aims to enhance the overall user experience.

    All of our members are expected to receive login information on 2 April. We appreciate your patience and if you have any questions in the meantime, please do not hesitate to contact the ANZCCJ Secretariat.

    We thank you for your continued support and hope you will enjoy our new interface and functions!

    Warm Regards,
    Misako Kitaoka

    Executive Director

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