Growth in Japan visitor numbers remains slow in Aug.
Jiji -- Sep 20
The estimated number of visitors to Japan in August rose 4.1 pct from a year earlier to 2,577,800, marking single-digit growth for the second consecutive month due to recent disasters in the country, the Japan National Tourism Organization said Wednesday.

A powerful earthquake in Osaka Prefecture in June and downpours that devastated other western parts of the country in July led to many Japan trip cancelations, the organization said.

The number of visitors from South Korea fell 4.3 pct to 593,900, dropping for the second month in a row. Besides the disasters in western Japan, where there are many popular sites for South Korean tourists, extreme heat in August is also believed to have caused some postponements in Japan visits.

Meanwhile, visitors from mainland China increased by 4.9 pct to 860,000 people, from Taiwan by 4.4 pct to 394,500 and Hong Kong by 0.7 pct to 198,100, all record highs for the month of August. But the growth rates shrank from predisaster levels.

In September, the country also experienced a string of large-scale disasters, including violent Typhoon Jebi, which caused the temporary closure of Kansai International Airport in Osaka, and a massive earthquake that shook the northernmost major island of Hokkaido, another popular tourist destination.

News source: Jiji
Jun 19
The Japan Meteorological Agency says a magnitude-6.7 quake struck the northern part of the country late Tuesday night. No fatalities have been reported. Tsunami advisories issued along the Sea of Japan coast have been lifted. (NHK)
Jun 19
Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga says people in the affected areas should remain on the alert. (NHK)
Jun 19
The Tokyo District Court on Tuesday sentenced Pierre Taki, an actor and member of Japanese techno-pop duo Denki Groove, to 18 months in prison, suspended for three years, for using cocaine. (Japan Times)
Jun 19
Almost half of singles in Japan who wish to get married are unable to find a suitable partner, with 61.4 percent of the group stating they are not doing anything to change the situation, a government survey showed Tuesday. (Japan Today)
Jun 19
A 62-year-old man wanted by police on suspicion of stabbing his former wife in Noboribetsu City, Hokkaido, has been found dead in a forest, police said Monday. (Japan Today)
Jun 18
Toyota drivers Kazuki Nakajima, Fernando Alonso and Sebastian Buemi claimed their second consecutive 24 Hours of Le Mans victory Sunday, but only after some bad luck scuttled their sister car's hopes of a win. (Kyodo)
Jun 18
Police in Kakegawa City, Shizuoka Prefecture, have arrested a 23-year-old woman on suspicion of attempted murder after she abandoned her newborn baby daughter in a business hotel’s toilet. (Japan Today)
Jun 18
Defense Minister Takeshi Iwaya apologized Monday to Akita Gov. Norihisa Satake for errors in the ministry’s geographical survey that was used to select the northeastern prefecture as a candidate for hosting a U.S.-developed missile defense system. (Japan Times)
Jun 18
Japanese e-commerce giant Rakuten and supermarket chain Seiyu are starting a drone delivery service for summer visitors to an island off Yokosuka, near Tokyo. (NHK)
Jun 17
Osaka Prefectural Police have arrested a man for allegedly stabbing a police officer and stealing his gun in Suita City on Sunday, reports Fuji News Network (June 17). (tokyoreporter.com)