FRONT PAGE NEWS

24 March 2019
A key part of the business model for convenience stores is their round-the-clock service. But a shortage of staffers is prompting some operators to consider shrinking their business hours. (NHK)
A member of a sister group of the popular all-girl band AKB48 on Friday criticized the outcome of a probe into an assault against her as "lies," as the group's management company revealed the result. (Japan Today)
The number of foreign residents in Japan had risen 6.6 percent at the end of 2018 from a year earlier, to reach a record high of some 2.73 million, Justice Ministry data showed on Friday. (Japan Times)
The cherry blossom season officially arrived in Tokyo on Thursday after officials from the Meteorological Agency confirmed that more than five blossoms had opened on a Somei-Yoshino cherry tree at Yasukuni Shrine in Chiyoda Ward. (Japan Times)
Japanese baseball legend Ichiro Suzuki of the US Major Leagues' Seattle Mariners has announced his retirement. (NHK)




Mar 23
A member of a sister group of the popular all-girl band AKB48 on Friday criticized the outcome of a probe into an assault against her as "lies," as the group's management company revealed the result. (Japan Today)
Mar 21
Police on Wednesday arrested an American man on suspicion of fatally stabbing his Japanese wife at a court where they were to settle a divorce. (Japan Today)
Mar 19
Japanese rock singer Yuya Uchida died of pneumonia on Sunday. He was 79 years old. (NHK)
Mar 19
Tokyo Metropolitan Police have arrested four male employees of a hostess club in Adachi Ward over the alleged assault of a fifth male employee, who later died, reports the Sankei Shimbun (tokyoreporter.com)
Mar 18
Interest in a gigantic inflatable "kokeshi" Japanese doll in Kyoto ballooned recently on social media when local authorities requested exhibition organizers to display it lying on its side. (Kyodo)

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Mar 23
A key part of the business model for convenience stores is their round-the-clock service. But a shortage of staffers is prompting some operators to consider shrinking their business hours. (NHK)
Mar 22
Last year proved to be a pivotal one for streaming music in Japan. According to a report by the Recording Industry Association of Japan, 2018 saw plays via platforms such as YouTube, Apple Music and Spotify overtake digital downloads. (Japan Times)
Mar 19
A team of investigators into how a Japanese real-estate leasing company built substandard apartment buildings has found building materials were improperly substituted on the orders of the company's founder. (NHK)
Mar 19
As part of an effort to streamline markets and attract more investors, the Tokyo Stock Exchange may demote about a third of its largest listed companies and cut down the bourses it operates to three from four, according to media reports. (Japan Times)
Mar 16
The Tokyo District Court has sentenced the former head of a digital currency exchange to 30 months in prison suspended for four years for altering data in a Bitcoin account. (NHK)

[more business news…]           [business blogs…]


Mar 20
As trade talks between Japan and the US look likely to start soon, and the price of oil drops in Japan, the value of the Yen is increasingly under threat of deflation. (newsonjapan.com)
Mar 20
The average price of all types of land in urban areas rose last year for the first time since 1992 as the growing influx of foreign tourists rejuvenated real estate investment, the government said Tuesday. (Japan Times)
Mar 19
The Japanese economy will likely once again be assessed as "recovering at a moderate pace" in the government's monthly report due out Wednesday, which also will note potential risks from overseas economies. (Nikkei)
Mar 16
Japan will tighten oversight of pay for foreign employees through ordinances issued Friday, aiming to address major concerns over working conditions as the country prepares to accept more labor from abroad starting next month. (Nikkei)
Mar 09
Since the 2008 global financial crisis, expansionary monetary policy has been the order of the day in most of the major advanced economies. (Japan Times)

[more economy news…]


Mar 20
The head of the Japanese Olympic Committee has announced he will step down when his term expires in June. (NHK)
Mar 19
The government will soon start discussing how to achieve a stable Imperial succession, including the creation of female branches of the royal family. (Japan Times)
Mar 15
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe suggested Thursday he has no intention of serving another four-year term as president of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party when his third term expires in September 2021. (Japan Times)
Mar 14
Journalists on Wednesday were given a guided tour of the Izumo — Japan’s largest flat-topped helicopter carrier — for the first time since the Defense Ministry revealed a controversial plan late last year to convert it so that it could handle fixed-wing aircraft — which critics and some opposition lawmakers say could make it capable of offensive operations. (Japan Times)
Mar 09
The governor and mayor of Osaka tendered their resignations Friday to seek election in each other's current position with the aim of reorganizing the major city into a metropolitan government system similar to Tokyo's. (Japan Today)

[more politics news…]


Mar 23
The number of foreign residents in Japan had risen 6.6 percent at the end of 2018 from a year earlier, to reach a record high of some 2.73 million, Justice Ministry data showed on Friday. (Japan Times)
Mar 23
Companies recruiting technology majors from Japanese universities are bracing for another year of missed targets as the supply of graduates fails to keep pace with broad demand for such skills as AI engineering and data analysis. (Nikkei)
Mar 23
Princess Kako, the 24-year-old granddaughter of Emperor Akihito, expressed her wish for her sister's happiness in a written answer to the media on the occasion of her graduation from International Christian University in Tokyo on Friday. (Kyodo)
Mar 21
Police on Thursday arrested a 14-year-old junior high school boy on suspicion of attempted murder after he stabbed a classmate at their school in Saijo, Ehime Prefecture. (Japan Today)
Mar 18
Japan's education ministry says it wants to find out how many foreign national children are living in the country but not enrolled in schools. (NHK)

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Mar 22
Rarely a week passes without hearing about a new type of robot created in Japan. Every other country of the world is wondering how Japan has managed to become a leading technological power. (newsonjapan.com)
Mar 21
The unmanned space probe Hayabusa2 has detected small amounts of minerals containing water on the surface of the asteroid Ryugu, a Japanese research team has said. (Japan Times)
Mar 19
Japan's space probe operating on an asteroid some 340 million kilometers from Earth is preparing to study the asteroid's interior by creating an artificial impact crater. (NHK)
Mar 13
Toyota Motor Corp. said Tuesday it will jointly develop a rover to be sent to the moon in 2029, amid fierce global competition to explore Earth’s natural satellite. (Japan Times)
Mar 09
A huge dead sperm whale has been found on a beach in eastern Japan. (NHK)

[more sci-tech news…]           [sci-tech blogs…]


Mar 22
Japanese baseball legend Ichiro Suzuki of the US Major Leagues' Seattle Mariners has announced his retirement. (NHK)
Mar 19
A rush went through the crowd as Ichiro Suzuki settled underneath the ball Shunta Tanaka hit high into air in the third inning. (Japan Times)
Mar 17
Red Bull's Max Verstappen finished third at the Australian Grand Prix on Sunday, delivering a first Formula One podium for the team's engine manufacturer Honda since its return to the sport. (Kyodo)
Mar 16
Trains in and around the Japanese capital will run later into the night during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games to allow spectators to get home easily from events. (NHK)
Mar 13
With 500 days to go until the start of the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games, the organizing committee has unveiled 50 pictograms of the 33 sports being held. (NHK)

[more sports news…]


Mar 22
The cherry blossom season officially arrived in Tokyo on Thursday after officials from the Meteorological Agency confirmed that more than five blossoms had opened on a Somei-Yoshino cherry tree at Yasukuni Shrine in Chiyoda Ward. (Japan Times)
Mar 21
Cherry trees came into bloom Wednesday in the southwestern prefecture of Nagasaki, the first blooming of the "Somei Yoshino" variety in Japan this spring, according to the Japan Meteorological Agency. (Japan Today)
Mar 19
One of the most unusual stations in the whole country is now open and ready for business. (soranews24.com)
Mar 17
An amusement park themed on the world of Finland's Moomin fairytale characters opened Saturday in Saitama Prefecture near Tokyo, aiming to attract 1 million visitors a year. (Kyodo)
Mar 16
With so many maid cafes in Tokyo it can be hard to pick just one to visit if you’re pressed for time and on a tight itinerary. (soranews24.com)

[more travel news…]           [travel blogs…]


Mar 21

Warring clans, formidable fortresses and samurai warlords laying down their lives for their people – Odawara is a city that has seen it all. Today, you can experience the sense of adventure of the samurai without meeting a violent end by visitin...

Mar 20

Nothing beats getting out of the house and traveling somewhere new in Japan — even if it's just a one-night expedition.

Yet, unless you plan on staying up all night like it's your first night out in Shibuya, you're going to have to make proper ...

Mar 20
Kyoto is the heart of traditional Japan, and when deciding on accommodation there, you'll be torn between hostels, hotels and the tempting ryokan. Kyoto deserves a few days of exploration and has very distinct areas to explore, each with their ow...
Mar 20
You can do almost anything on a rainy day in Tokyo as long as you have an umbrella. Put away that teruterubouzu (a Japanese rain-repelling charm) and embrace the drizzle! Here are our recommendations for what to do and where to go when it's wet o...
Mar 19
Steadfast, tenacious and resilient, bamboo is the archetypal Eastern plant. No trip to Japan is complete without some time spent in, around or just gazing at a bamboo forest. The Japanese capital is chock-full of bamboo, some of it tucked away in ...
Mar 18

Tokyo can have some of the best railway and subway system in the world, but locals know that one of the best ways to get around the tightly packed metropolis is no other than by bicycle. If you're cycling around, however — especially with kids! ...

Mar 18

When Carlos Ghosn was released on bail last Monday, it wasn't the ¥1 billion ($8.9 million) bail amount making the rounds on Twitter, nor his lengthy 108-day detention period. Rather, it was the ridiculous workman outfit he was wearing when leavi...

Mar 17

There is a certain quaint and mysterious about the geishas of Japan. They are like the glistening moon in the heavens; they contain a flicker of enigma that is never really understood by all. Their mystifying presence invokes nostalgia from the ...

Mar 16
On March 13 2019, the Japanese government reportedly gave up submitting an amendment of copyright law to the Diet. (Please read "Japan to amend copyright law to combat piracy" for the proposed amendment.) It was specifically for anti-piracy, but i...
Mar 16

The history of hay fever in Japan is intrinsically linked to the Cryptomeria japonica. But to lay all the blame on the Japanese cedar tree misses some interesting parts of a story of the fortunes of modern living.

Japanese people often refer to h...

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