• Kyodo News

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Some 39 foreign nationals will join convenience store chain operator Lawson Inc. next month, accounting for about 30 percent of its 122 newly hired employees and up from around 10 percent the year before, company officials said Monday.

The foreign employees, who are mostly Chinese, will be on a career track to take charge of managing Lawson’s growing outlets in China and other foreign countries and its domestic outlets that are seeing more foreign part-time workers.

Lawson has decided to expand recruitment of foreign employees and plans to maintain the 30 percent level in the future because its hiring in 2008 of foreign students with proficient Japanese-language and other skills helped to encourage Japanese graduates who joined the company at the same time.

The foreign employees joining Lawson next month comprise 30 Chinese, four South Koreans, two Vietnamese and one each from Taiwan, Indonesia and Bangladesh. In 2008, the company recruited 10 foreign students as employees.

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