• Kyodo

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The economic fallout in the Kyushu region from last month’s powerful earthquakes is tipped to reach up to ¥370 billion in the current fiscal year, a local economic research center said Thursday.

The estimated maximum loss is equivalent to 0.7 percent of gross production in the Kyushu region in fiscal 2012, according to the Kyushu Economic Research Center.

The center attributed the production fall largely to a downturn in consumption, which is expected to drop by ¥190 billion to ¥230 billion.

Impaired production as a result of damaged equipment in the manufacturing, farming and fisheries sectors will result in a ¥23 billion to ¥64 billion drop in output, while disruption in parts supplies is also expected to push down the output of the manufacturing industry by ¥12 billion to ¥39 billion.

The tourism industry, meanwhile, is expected to face a decline in the number of people who stay in hotels, which will lead to an estimated ¥36 billion decrease in output, the center said.

Efforts to repair damage from the earthquakes are underway, but the Japan Meteorological Agency warned that some areas in Kumamoto could still be jolted by an earthquake that could reach around lower 6 on the 7-point Japanese seismic intensity scale.

As of Thursday, 1,500 seismic events have been recorded by the agency since April 14, when Kumamoto was rattled by a magnitude-6.5 quake. A magnitude-7.3 quake followed on April 16.

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