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Results of the Regional Economic and Industrial Research (October–December 2013)

The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) has compiled the results of the regional economic and industrial research that the regional Bureaus of Economy, Trade and Industry (including the Hokuriku Branch of the Electricity and Gas Industry, and the Economy, Trade and Industry Department of the Okinawa General Bureau) conduct on a quarterly basis to identify regional economic trends, and METI hereby releases the results.

Highlights of the results
The assessment of the national economic situation is that it is “picking up,” in light of the continuous movement of four consecutive quarters since the January–March 2013 period. Assessments of regional economic conditions in six regions, namely Kanto, Hokuriku, Kinki, Chugoku, Shikoku and Kyushu, have been revised upward from those in the previous quarter, and those in four regions, namely Hokkaido, Tohoku, Tokai and Okinawa, remain the same as in the previous quarter.

Production has remained mainly steady in the automobile industry, and that in the electronics and devices sector has been steady mainly in the car and smartphone industries in many regions, although there are some regional differences.

Concerning business investment, investment accompanied by maintenance and replacement of facilities in the manufacturing sector has continued. Some manufacturers have been showing signs of domestic investment towards enhancements of production capacity. Non-manufacturers have shown signs of investment in new store openings and the renovation of existing stores, mainly in the retail sector.

As for the employment situation, the effective ratio of job offers to applicants has been moving upward, while no movement of proactive recruitment of full-time employees continues to be seen from the previous quarter (July–September 2013 period) due to a sense of uncertainty about the future.

Private consumption has shown steady performance in sales of luxury goods in department stores across Japan, while the budget-minded trend has been still continuing in sales of daily necessities. As for travel, sales of domestic trips are brisk and the number of foreign tourists is increasing, according to the comments from some respondents.

Regional Economic and Industrial Research

The regional Bureaus of Economy, Trade and Industry (including the Hokuriku Branch of the Electricity and Gas Industry, and the Economy, Trade and Industry Department of the Okinawa General Bureau) survey enterprises in their service areas using interviews and other survey techniques on a quarterly basis for the purpose of identifying economic trends in the areas, such as those related to business conditions, production, and investment in facilities, and they collect and analyze the survey results.

METI has compiled the survey results applicable to the October to December 2013 period (the survey was conducted from November 21 to December 20, 2013, covering 816 companies).

Release Date

January 29, 2014

Division in Charge

Regional Economic and Industrial Policy Division, Regional Economic and Industrial Policy Group

Related Information

Overview of Japan's Economy
Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry
1-3-1 Kasumigaseki, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 100-8901, Japan Tel: +81-(0)3-3501-1511
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