Crystal Wong

For Crystal Wong's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:

Japan pulls out stops to woo high-end U.S. tourists

National Jul 21, 2007

Japan pulls out stops to woo high-end U.S. tourists

Taking advantage of the popularity of luxury tour packages in the United States, Japan is aiming to promote the high-end tourism sector in a bid to boost not only the number of foreign visitors to Japan but that of higher-yielding tours as well. Japan Airlines ...

U.S. 'kombucha': smelly and no kelp

National Jul 12, 2007

U.S. 'kombucha': smelly and no kelp

Ask most Japanese what "kombucha" is, and they say it is a mild, brownish kelp-based tea. But across New York and the rest of the United States, a growing number of fans know kombucha as a lightly carbonated, sweet fermented tea said to possess nearly ...

National Jul 7, 2007

China pollution ills tied to lack of political reform

China needs political reform if it is to effectively curb its greenhouse gas emissions and maintain economic growth, an influential Japanese economist said. Economic policy analyst Naoki Tanaka stressed that political reform in China would shape future relations with Japan and is vital to overcoming ...

Students' haiku spotlighted at the United Nations

National Jun 13, 2007

Students' haiku spotlighted at the United Nations

More than 70 haiku in both English and Japanese written by students of all ages are on display at the United Nations, marking a first for an annual haiku contest sponsored by a group of English and Japanese teachers for the last nine years. "One ...

National May 15, 2007

Japan's 'edge' threatened by drop in students abroad: expert

Since the number of Japanese students studying in the United States peaked 10 years ago at more than 47,000, slow growth has given way to decline and there is concern that the growing number of other Asian students overseas could hurt Japan's future. "In macro ...

Japanese-American entrepreneur honored for community involvement

National May 3, 2007

Japanese-American entrepreneur honored for community involvement

New York-based entrepreneur Julie Azuma was recently honored by the Coalition of Asian Pacific Americans with the first annual Lotus Award for her long-term involvement in Asian-American community affairs, coinciding with the start of Asian Pacific Heritage during May in the United States. Azuma, 63, ...

National Feb 10, 2007

N.Y. Japan Society fetes centennial

As New York's Japan Society approaches its 100th anniversary in May, its chairman, James McDonald, remarked on the institution's growing impact on business, culture and U.S.-Japan relations since the group's founding by influential Americans in 1907. McDonald, the group's chairman since 2005, called the simple ...

'Good people' key in Merrill Lynch turnaround

Business Dec 28, 2006

'Good people' key in Merrill Lynch turnaround

NEW YORK (Kyodo) One of the major lessons Merrill Lynch Japan Securities Co. learned after the drastic restructuring of its retail brokerage business was that "people were key" in returning the firm to profitability, said President Izumi Kobayashi. "Thinking back on five years' history, ...

'Always' looks at simpler time, plays on universal nostalgia

National Aug 23, 2006

'Always' looks at simpler time, plays on universal nostalgia

At its North American premiere, director Takashi Yamazaki's acclaimed film "Always -- Sunset on Third Street" ("Always -- Sanchome no Yuhi") was met with enthusiastic applause from the New York audience. The reaction demonstrated that a film about life in a close-knit Tokyo neighborhood in ...