Tourists flock to Japan -- but only splash out in Tokyo
Nikkei -- Aug 04
As a record-breaking inbound tourism trend continues in Japan, a closer analysis of government data reveals somewhat skewed regional results.

Analysis has found that, while visitors to Japan from abroad are spread through the country, their spending is concentrated in Tokyo. In the first half of 2019, 16.63 million people visited Japan from abroad, up 4.6% from a year earlier, according to the Japan National Tourism Organization. Despite a slowdown in the rate of growth, the number represents an all-time high for the January-June period. Nikkei analyzed data compiled by a subsidiary of NTT Docomo on the number of foreign visitors to municipalities and compared the 2018 figure with that of 2016. Among the findings are that the number of visitors to western Japan has increased by 41%, compared with gains of about 20% for eastern and central Japan. Of the 20 municipalities with the biggest growth rates, 16 are in western Japan. Chuo ward in the city of Osaka, which has sightseeing destinations such as Osaka Castle, logged the biggest gain thanks to an increase in flights by Asian low-cost carriers to Kansai International Airport. A total of 13.95 million people visited the ward in 2018, meaning that one in three tourists who came to Japan visited Chuo ward. But tourist spending showed a very different phenomenon. An analysis of spending by 3.7 million Chinese and other foreign visitors using JCB branded credit cards, including those co-branded with China's UnionPay, in Japan's 47 prefectures in 2018 found that 53% of total consumption happened in Tokyo. Among municipalities, Shibuya ward in Tokyo attracted the biggest amount of spending by foreign tourists.

News source: Nikkei
Jul 10
The number of new daily coronavirus infections in Tokyo hit a single-day record of 224 on Thursday, the metropolitan government said. (Japan Today)
Jul 10
Officials of Tokyo's Shinjuku Ward say they will offer 100,000 yen, or about 930 dollars, to residents infected with the coronavirus. (NHK)
Jul 10
A 24-year-old woman in custody after she caused the death of her 3-year-old daughter by leaving her alone at their residence for more than one week barricaded her inside with furniture, police have revealed, reports Fuji News Network (July 9). (tokyoreporter.com)
Jul 10
Japan will tighten its criteria for supporting exports of coal-fired power plants amid criticism that the practice goes against global efforts to curb global warming. (Japan Times)
Jul 10
The tourism industry in Japan came to a screeching halt earlier this year with the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, as pretty much the whole country stayed home for both cherry blossom season and the Golden Week vacation period, two of the spring’s busiest travel periods. (soranews24.com)
Jul 10
The Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic organizing committee will issue ticket refunds to people unable to attend the games due to their one-year postponement, sources close to the matter said Thursday. (Japan Times)
Jul 09
Pounding rain that already caused deadly floods in southern Japan was moving northeast Wednesday, battering large areas of Japan's main island, swelling more rivers, triggering mudslides and destroying houses and roads. At least 58 people have died in several days of flooding. (Japan Today)
Jul 09
Struggling businesses and other clients have left Japanese banks with record outstanding loans for a third straight month. (NHK)
Jul 09
Carlos Ghosn, the former Nissan Motor Co chairman, wired $862,500 last year to a company managed by one of the two men who later helped him escape from Japan, U.S. prosecutors said in a Tuesday court filing. (Japan Today)
Jul 08
In a move that will affect Japanese studying in the U.S., the government there said Monday that international students attending American universities will have to depart the country or transition to another college if their classes are moved entirely online for the fall semester amid the coronavirus pandemic. (Japan Times)