NEW YORK – Japanese companies operating in the global market are advising Fukushima Prefecture firms to put labels on food and other products to show they have passed safety tests to reassure overseas consumers worried by the impact of the nuclear crisis at the Fukushima No. 1 power plant.
The advice came as Fukushima business leaders met Thursday at the Japanese Consulate-General in New York with representatives of Japanese companies operating in the United States to discuss how best to cope with the impact of the nuclear crisis on Fukushima products, according to meeting participants.
Fukushima products ranging from food to screws were initially subject to import restrictions overseas due to radioactive contamination fears.
The safety labels would be put on products that clear radiation tests, recognizing them as free from contamination.
“I thought that the safety label proposal was a good idea,” said Kenichi Shishido, who runs an insurance agency in Koriyama. “I would like to tell my business colleagues in Fukushima that we should promote our products to the world in a positive manner.”
The companies also recommended that Fukushima business leaders consider investment in wind and other nonnuclear electricity generation projects as well as advanced medical technology and other areas to create employment in the prefecture.
The Finance Ministry will start selling government bonds Monday targeting individuals in a bid to raise funds for reconstruction of the March disaster-hit areas.
The ministry said Friday the bonds to be marketed until Dec. 30 are 10-year floating-rate bonds as well as five- and three-year fixed-rate bonds.
The interest on the floating-rate bond, set at 0.72 percent per year initially, will be revised every six months. The rates will be fixed at 0.33 percent per year for five-year bonds and at 0.18 percent for three-year debt. They will be issued Jan. 16.
Finance Minister Jun Azumi said he will buy ¥1 million worth of the bonds, adding he has pitched the bonds to other Cabinet ministers.
Azumi will present those who purchase the bonds with a letter of appreciation.