Japanese-language schools expand offerings overseas
Nikkei -- Dec 15
Japanese education companies are expanding their language offerings overseas, seeing business opportunities in meeting growing demand for Japanese-speaking foreign manpower as the nation opens its doors to workers from overseas.

As of October 2017, there were about 1.28 million foreign workers in Japan, including interns and student part-timers, according to the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare. The numbers have grown 90% in six years, hitting record highs, due to the worsening labor shortage and an increase in foreign students.

The government has revised the immigration control and refugee recognition act to allow new visas for unskilled foreign workers. Japanese schools are betting that demand for Japanese-language education will increase, because foreign nationals are required to have a certain level of Japanese language proficiency to get a job.

Japanese education and recruiting company Human Holdings provides Japanese lessons at universities overseas for a fee through its Human Academy unit. Although the company now partners with a few schools, "we aim to contract with 100 schools over the next 12 months and win about 1,000 students a year," a company representative said.

The company has informally gotten green lights from several universities about providing Japanese lessons, the official said.

Human operates Japanese-language schools in Indonesia, Thailand and Vietnam. Most students come to Japan as interns or students at universities. Enrollment at its school in Indonesia has doubled from the previous year.

News source: Nikkei
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