TPP and Japanese Economic Revitalization

Place: Room 351, C.K. Choi Building, 1855 West Mall
By: Atsushi Yamakoshi, Executive Director of Keidanren USA
Dates: Friday, May 30, 2016
Time: 3:30 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.

About the Event

Facing two decades of deflation and a declining and aging population, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s government has implemented “Abenomics”, comprised of three arrows: aggressive monetary policy, expansionary fiscal policy and an economic growth strategy. The first and second arrows are matters of political will and already implemented. The third (economic growth) arrow should eventually come from business activities. Trade liberalization, including TPP and structural reforms are necessary, but these may not be sufficient. The efforts of and performance by companies and employees to strengthen their competitiveness through innovation and entrepreneurship are critically important. In the long run, education is crucial; but in the short run, psychological reforms may be warranted. Through the long deflationary period, Japanese people may have tended to be short sighted, inward-looking and conservative. We may need psychological reforms to promote long sightedness, an external focus and more risk taking. TPP and more global competition can be a new “healthy” gaiatsu, or foreign pressure, for Japan to carry out structural and (possibly) psychological reforms.

About the Speaker

Atsushi Yamakoshi is the Executive Director of Keidanren USA. Mr. Yamakoshi returns to this position as head of Keidanren’s Washington DC office, having also served as its Director from 2006 to 2009, and as U.S. Representative of Keidanren and Visiting Economist at Japan Economic Institute (JEI) from 1994 to 1997.  Immediately prior to his current posting, Mr. Yamakoshi served as Director of the Chairman’s Office for three successive Keidanren Chairmen (Chairman Mitarai, Chairman Yonekura and current Chairman Sakakibara).  Mr. Yamakoshi joined Keidanren in 1981.  In the course of his long career there, he has been named to a broad range of prominent positions including: Executive Director of the Council for Better Corporate Citizenship (CBCC), Deputy Director of the International Economic Affairs Bureau, and Press Secretary for Chairman Okuda.  He is noted for his expertise on such issues as Japan-U.S. relations, Japan-Canada relations, Asian affairs, trade and investment issues, global environmental policies, and media relations.  Mr. Yamakoshi earned his B.A. in Economics at Waseda University in Tokyo in 1981; he has an M.A. from the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada, which he received in 1986; he also has a Master of International Public Policy from Johns Hopkins University’s School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), which he received in 1997.

Keidanren USA is the U.S. liaison entity for Keidanren, the Japan Business Federation.   Keidanren USA’s office is located in Washington DC and its core mission is to facilitate more engagement by the Japanese business sector with the U.S. policymaking community, and to promote the very real contributions (in terms of investment and jobs) being made by Japanese companies to the U.S. economy.  Keidanren USA’s return to Washington in 2015 — after a 6 year hiatus — seeks to build on and channel the renewed interest in Japan among U.S. policymakers.

See the poster for the event.