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Keiko Ujikane

For Keiko Ujikane's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:

Unlocking growth potential is top task for Abenomics 2.0

Dec 16, 2014

Unlocking growth potential is top task for Abenomics 2.0

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s election win strengthened his hand to move beyond the fiscal and monetary stimulus that brought an end to deflation in his first two years. The tougher task for “Abenomics 2.0″ will be to boost Japan’s growth potential. First up for ...

Crude oil slide thorn in BOJ's side

| Nov 28, 2014

Crude oil slide thorn in BOJ's side

When a country imports almost all its energy, a slide in oil prices to a four-year low should be helpful — cutting costs for companies and households. For Japan, it may not be so simple. The reliance of the world’s third-largest economy on fossil ...

Seafood a sweet spot in Japanese exports as yen weakens

Oct 23, 2014

Seafood a sweet spot in Japanese exports as yen weakens

Seafood is a sweet spot in Japanese exports this year that is pushing sales of food abroad to a record and gaining strength as the yen weakens. Food shipments increased every month this year through September as the yen fell 4 percent, putting them ...

Abe taps Shiller insights on breaking 'shrunken mindset'

May 20, 2014

Abe taps Shiller insights on breaking 'shrunken mindset'

Three weeks before the consumption tax was increased last month for the first time in 17 years, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe turned to Nobel laureate Robert Shiller to try to restore a vital ingredient of his economic revolution: optimism. Abe met the Yale University ...

Apr 3, 2014

Cash-rich firms spurn banks' offers

Banks are the most keen to lend companies money in 17 years. Corporate treasurers don’t need the cash. The Bank of Japan’s “tankan” business confidence index released Tuesday showed that the prevalence of midsize companies saying banks are willing to lend to them rose ...

Abe funds matchmaking to ease welfare bill

Mar 20, 2014

Abe funds matchmaking to ease welfare bill

Over coffee and cake in a rural cafe in Kochi Prefecture, Hideyuki Tanaka, 40, plucked up the courage to speak with Eri, 14 years his junior. A pianist provided the ambience for the afternoon gathering of 18 singles, arranged by local government cupids, which ...

Tax-free gifts unlocking retiree savings

Nov 28, 2013

Tax-free gifts unlocking retiree savings

Shoko Iwasaki looked for years for a tax-free way to pass down a lifetime of savings to her grandson. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has offered the 71-year-old an answer with a program now helping unlock pensioners’ hoarded wealth. “I’m so grateful for this tax ...

Thatcher-esque disparities a reality under Abe

Oct 21, 2013

Thatcher-esque disparities a reality under Abe

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe evokes the late Margaret Thatcher as he repeats "there is no alternative" to his platform of economic change. One of the byproducts: prospects for a Thatcher-type division of wealth.