What happens in Japan stays in Japan?

Some say that despite Japan being the third largest economy in the world, what happens in Japan, usually stays in Japan. After the recent Tsunami, this seemed to be the case, initially.

However now that most of the countries industry has shut down, the effects are really being felt around the world. Why? Well, Japan is a major exporter of electrical and motorised goods – after all companies like Honda and Sony are based there.

A Busy Japanese Street - Representative of the Japanese EconomyOften the Japanese factories make some of the parts and then the final goods are assembled closer to where they are going to be sold. This is great as it increases capacity due to specialisation, but it does have it’s problems too.

Due to the Japanese parts of such businesses currently being shut down, the entire supply chain for such goods has ground to a halt, as nobody can get the parts they need out of Japan.


Around the world Japanese firms are shutting down their plants, due to a lack of parts. Toyota are actually now withdrawing their UK operations due to the Tsunami – among other things.

Japanese Car Logos

The logos of well known Japanese cars

Sony are in a similar situation, as their firm is considering a complete shut down for 2 weeks due to power shortages. No doubt other firms like Panasonic, Nissan and Fujitsu wont be far behind too.

It looks like the shifting of a few tectonic plates might have caused a lot more than a devastating earthquake and tsunami, but also a slowdown in the global tech industry – leading to a large loss of jobs worldwide 🙁

What are your views on this, will the world really struggle without Japan?

4 thoughts on “What happens in Japan stays in Japan?

  1. Hi, Christopher
    Here is my opinion. If we look at the history of japan, we can see that this country has managed to build one of the strongest economy in less than 50 years. Now practically all the world depends (or depended) on it (at least in the sphere of electronic devices). The Japanese people are people with some special mentality: they never panic (did you see any signs of panic or something like that?), they are tolerant, patient and, which is more important, hard working. They will manage to recover the economy in no time and very soon the plants will get spare parts and the production will continue. At least, I wish them do it.

    • Christopher (admin team)

      This is true Anna, the Japanese are extremely residual people. As you say they have a very strong economy, which has grown very rapidly in a short space of time.

      “They will manage to recover the economy in no time and very soon the plants will get spare parts and the production will continue. At least, I wish them do it.” – I am with you on that Anna, and I just think that most of the world probably is too!

      Thanks for the comment, it’s nice to see yet another new face!
      Christopher – Admin Team

  2. Yes, it important to remember that Japan does have a major impact on the world, you are very right Christopher. And for example the current fuel prices, would be even higher if Japan was taking in its usual amount of fuel. The Libyan crisis is keeping prices high but as Japans need for fuel is low at the moment it is keeping the prices stable.

    • Christopher (admin team)

      Very true Bhattman. As oil is such a demanded commodity, even though Libya supplies less than 2% of the worlds oil, the affect on prices would have been much bigger if it were to go 100% offline and Japan were to demand more oil.

      Thanks for the comment 🙂
      Christopher – Admin Team

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