Monday, November 12, 2012

Return to Sender? Japanese Exports Drop

Japan is headed for recession, both the Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal report. Neither report mentions the role of radiation contamination in affecting exports:

Japanese economy contracts; economists, officials predict a recession. The Washington Post by Chico Harlan Nov 12

TOKYO — Japan’s economy contracted 0.9 percent in the late summer, according to government data released Monday, as officials and economists here warned that the country appears headed toward a recession.

At an annualized rate, Japan’s gross domestic product shrank 3.5 percent, a reversal following two quarters of growth. The drop-off signals the major obstacles facing the world’s third-largest economy as it deals with weakened demand in Europe and a simmering diplomatic spat with China, both of which have hurt Japanese exports. 

Japan’s exports for the quarter — a period between July and September — plummeted 5 percent, the steepest drop since immediately after the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami

Majia here: The article mentions tensions between China and Japan as one source of the drop in exports but nothing is mentioned about the nuclear crisis and contaminated exports.

Japan's Economy Contracts in Third Quarter. The Wall Street Journal, Nov 12, 2012 by T. Nakamichi p. A12

[Excerpted] "Now the danger is that the new slump in the world's third-largest economy will ripple through other countries, particularly Asian nations heavily dependent on trade and investment from Japan. Many economists  think Japan's GDP...could shrink for a second consecutive quarter...."

Majia here: It is certainly true that Japan's economic problems have been long lasting and that tensions with China have clearly hurt exports.

That said, it is also true that some of Japan's exports are being returned because of radiation contamination, although this is not widely reported in the US press because the US is apparently not testing any Japanese products for radiation contamination. US efforts to bolster the Japanese economy come at cost to US consumers who may be eating or routinely using contaminated Japanese goods.

TV: 200% as many radioactive products returned to Japan this year than in 2011 says Russian report (VIDEO)

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