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Akiko Kondo

For Akiko Kondo's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:

National Nov 23, 2006

Expert warns income disparity, poverty rate to keep getting worse

Contrary to government assertions, income disparities are rising -- as is the relative poverty rate -- because the number of nonregular workers with low wages has increased since the prolonged slump in the 1990s, according to an expert on income. "It's very obvious that the ...

Unwanted and unloved, 2,000 yen bills find few fans

Business Sep 6, 2006

Unwanted and unloved, 2,000 yen bills find few fans

Quite a few people may wonder where the 2,000 yen bank notes have gone since they came out in 2000. "I've hardly ever seen a 2,000 yen note over the past six years," said Kyoko Kanda, 24, an office worker in Tokyo. "I keep one as ...

Champion chef spreads Naples pizza culture here

National Feb 22, 2006

Champion chef spreads Naples pizza culture here

Makoto Onishi, the winner of the title of best pizza maker at the annual Naples pizza festival in 2003, busied himself kneading dough and topping pizzas with tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese. Then he welcomed hundreds of pizza lovers to Omotesando Hills, Tokyo's newest commercial-residential ...

Foreign hotels take on giants in Tokyo

Business Jan 5, 2006

Foreign hotels take on giants in Tokyo

A tourist or businessperson visiting Tokyo may be surprised to see so many upscale foreign-owned hotels springing up in the heart of the capital. In December, Hong Kong-based Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group International Ltd. opened a new luxury hotel in a redeveloped area of Nihonbashi, ...

How much do you want that puppy in the window?

National Mar 13, 2004

How much do you want that puppy in the window?

Pet store owners know it's hard to walk past the wide, unblinking eyes of a golden retriever puppy in a store-front window. Indeed, they count on this ability to tug on your heart strings to boost sales. But puppies bought on impulse grow up, and Japan ...

New technology able to lift fingerprints from skin

National Jan 5, 2003

New technology able to lift fingerprints from skin

Forensic experts from the Kagawa Prefectural Police have developed a new method of obtaining fingerprints from human skin that they believe will be useful in identifying criminals in assault cases. Although still in the experimental phase, the technology would be effective in narrowing down the ...

National Sep 10, 2002

Town tries matchmaking parties, cash incentives to boost population

Aji, a small town in Kagawa Prefecture, has taken the step of organizing "omiai," or introductions for prospective marriage partners, for its residents to deal with a dwindling population. Aji is one of a number of municipalities that face a declining population. While some have ...