The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) has compiled the results of the regional economic and industrial research conducted by 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) on a quarterly basis in order to identify regional economic trends and hereby releases the results.
[Highlights of the results]
The assessment of the national economic situation remains the same as that in the previous quarter. It is “improving moderately,” although some businesses show weakness. Compared to the previous quarter, the assessment of regional economic conditions has been revised upward in the Kinki, Kyushu, and Okinawa regions, has been revised downward in the Hokkaido and Hokuriku regions, and remains the same in other regions.
As for production in the automobile-related industries, sales, particularly to overseas such as North America, have shown steady performance, and domestic sales had a weak tone, but domestic sales show signs of picking up in some areas. Production in the electronic devices sector, mainly for smartphones, has shown steady movements, while the effects of the Chinese economy continue to be seen. In the general-purpose, production, and business-oriented machinery sector, production of machine tools mainly for overseas such as North America remains steady.
Concerning business investment, some manufacturers have engaged in investment toward the enhancement of production capacity and streamlining, while non-manufacturers nationwide have demonstrated a tendency toward opening new locations in the retail sector.
As for the employment situation, according to comments from some respondents, a labor shortage remains from the previous quarter, and some say that this tendency will persist in the future while movements of companies to expand employment are rising, although others say that businesses have secured adequate human resources.
As for private consumption across Japan, according to comments from some respondents, sales of food and beverages at supermarkets and sales of luxury goods at department stores remain steady. Meanwhile, sales of clothing are poor due to the warm winter. In the home appliance industry, sales of seasonal appliances such as heating appliances are poor due to the warm winter, while sales of major appliances remain steady. In sales in the automobile industry, decreased demand following the light vehicle tax hike continues to be seen. As for tourism, consumption by foreign tourists is brisk, according to 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 local jurisdictions using interviews and other survey techniques on a quarterly basis for the purpose of identifying local economic trends, including 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 2015 period (the survey was conducted from November 20 to December 22, 2015, covering 809 companies).
Reference 1: Regional Economic and Industrial Research (October-December 2015 period)(PDF:529KB)
Reference 2: Regional Economic and Industrial Research (October-December 2015 period) (general and regional summaries)(PDF:1,470KB)
January 22, 2016
Division in charge
Regional Economic and Industrial Policy Division, Regional Economic and Industrial Policy Group