In 2008 Japan's exports fell by 27% on the previous year.
Japan's sovereign debt stands at 195% of GDP.
Japan's current account surplus fell 34.3% in 2008 to 16.28 trillion yen - a record drop.
The IMF predicts Japan's economy will contract 2.5% this year.
Industrial production fell 8.1% in the 2008 October-November period - the largest fall since records began in 1953.
Domestic sales of automobiles in Japan are the lowest for 34 years. January 2009 sales of new cars dropped 27.9% to 174,281 units. Of the big 3 Japanese car manufacturers, Toyota Corp sales were down 22%, Honda 31% and Nissan 31%.
In response to the recession, the LDP government of Prime Minister Taro Aso will offer every person in Japan a 12,000 yen (US$131) handout as part of a larger 75 trillion yen economic stimulus package.
The world's number one automaker, Toyota, announced an expected operating loss of 450 billion yen for the financial year ending in March 2009.
Japan Airlines (JAL) predicts a 37 billion yen loss for the year. The electronics giants Pioneer, Toshiba, Panasonic and NEC forecast group operating losses of 17 billion yen, 280 billion yen, 100 billion yen and 30 billion yen respectively.
The BOJ survey of the nation's largest manufacturers sees business confidence at a rate of minus 24.
An estimated 6,000 full-time workers will lose their jobs in the six-month period through March 2009 in addition to 124,800 non-regular workers.
Retail sales fell 2.7% in December 2008 and again in January 2009 with five of the major Japanese department stores reporting a drop in consumer spending. Daimaru, Matsuzakaya, Takashimaya, Isetan and Mitsukoshi all reported feeling the "Toyota Shock" - the fallout from the negative numbers at Japan's largest automaker.
Japan's food self-sufficiency is 40%; energy self-sufficiency 4%. Japan has 2% of the world's populationand 0.2% of the world's land.
Sources: Daily Yomiuri, Japan Times, Kansai Time Out, Japan Inc
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Friday, February 13, 2009
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