High food hygiene costs choking export growth

Mar 14, 2009

High food hygiene costs choking export growth

Strict hygiene criteria in importing countries and the high cost food producers have to shoulder to meet such requirements are limiting the export of Japanese food, experts said at a recent symposium set up by the Organization to Promote Japanese Restaurants Abroad, or JRO. ...

Elementary school English: Ready or not

Mar 5, 2009

Elementary school English: Ready or not

Poor English skills and coordination with visiting English speakers are just two of the problems worrying elementary school teachers as the government’s two-year transition period to inaugurate weekly classes in the language begins next month. “I know just enough English to understand what the ...

Fall in U.S. Japanese students worrisome

Feb 26, 2009

Fall in U.S. Japanese students worrisome

In a bid to stop the dramatic decline in Japanese studying in the United States, representatives of U.S. colleges and universities met Wednesday with education minister Ryu Shionoya to demand that Japan improve efforts to promote study abroad. After peaking at 47,000 in 1997, ...

Christianity's long history in the margins

| Feb 24, 2009

Christianity's long history in the margins

Prime Minister Taro Aso may be a proclaimed Christian, but as far as the spread of the faith among the populace, it finds only a marginal presence. Certain trappings of Christianity, however, have manifested themselves in modern Japan, particularly in terms of Christian-style weddings ...

Feb 18, 2009

Myanmar refugees to try resettling

As Japan prepares to take in Myanmarese from Thai refugee camps, it is important that the communities they resettle in fully support their integration into society, experts said at a recent Tokyo symposium held by the Foreign Ministry. In fiscal 2010, Japan will begin ...

Feb 18, 2009

Clinton meets abductees' relatives, pledges to help find resolution

Relatives of people kidnapped by North Korea met Tuesday with U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, who stressed that international cooperation is key to resolving the long-running problem. “Clinton said she would think seriously about how to treat the problem, although she avoided ...

Feb 7, 2009

Canada fetes ties with programs

The Canadian Embassy called on Japanese schools and students Friday to apply for education-related programs it will launch to celebrate the 80th anniversary of diplomatic relations with Japan this year. As part of its Youth and Innovation venture, the embassy said Friday it is ...

Feb 5, 2009

Fujitsu allows workers to moonlight to make ends meet

In a sign of the times, major electronics firm Fujitsu Ltd. is allowing some of its factory workers to hold second jobs to compensate for shorter working hours and lower wages amid the deepening recession, the company said Wednesday. The majority of 5,000 full-time ...

Jan 31, 2009

Teens face DoCoMo 'encounter' site ban

NTT DoCoMo Inc. on Friday became the first mobile phone company to automatically ban customers under 18 from accessing suspicious Internet dating sites as the government attempts to crack down on “deaikei” (encounter) crimes. The move, to be followed by the other major cell ...