Regarding the Jan. 12 story “Rising labor costs biggest threat to Japanese firms in Asia,” welcome to the 21st century. This is not a criticism aimed at any particular country, but against the corporate system of exploiting cheap labor in developing countries. That is just an extension of economic imperialism whether we admit it or not.

It is sad people do not realize that this economic model is an anachronism. How much longer can such companies continue to find cheaper labor? This proves that the global companies are not making profits through innovation, trust and better sales methods but more because of access to cheaper labor. Companies are relocating not in search of talent but in search of a cheaper workforce.

And what is the use of GDP growth when over a billion people are now living in poverty even though global GDP has nearly tripled?

Coming back to Japanese companies, we, the public, need to ask a very important question. Japanese companies are not raising the salaries of their ordinary employees even in Japan even though their government wants them to. The companies are sitting on mountains of cash. Why do they need to pursue further profits in the way the article mentions? Some may say it is to provide employment to the needy. Isn’t that also a cliched argument that has been refuted by many modern economists?


The opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are the writer’s own and do not necessarily reflect the policies of The Japan Times.

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