Not even a third of Japan’s small and medium-size firms have begun to face the millennium bug problem out of a lack money or knowledge, the Small and Medium Enterprise Agency said Monday.The agency sent out surveys to about 10,000 small and medium-size companies in September, to which 2,026 companies responded. More than 30 percent said they had not made any concrete preparations.Of companies with five or less employees, 46.4 percent said they are not or are just beginning to consider taking action, while 39.7 percent of firms with six to 20 employees gave similar answers.Of companies either preparing or on the verge, about 30 percent cited a lack of sufficient funds or information about the nature of the millennium bug problem. They also said they cannot decide whether to modify programs or rebuild systems, and are unsure whether they can make accurate estimates of the costs needed to fix their computers.Many of those that haven’t taken action yet said they have no knowledge about the millennium bug problem or believe they still have plenty of time to prepare themselves for it.

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