Japanese companies welcome skilled foreign employees

Japanese companies welcome skilled foreign employees

The vast majority of Japanese companies back loosening the country's tough immigration system aimed at coping with a terrible labor shortage, although they appreciate skilled employees capable of fitting into the Japanese workplace, and not an invasion of unskilled ones, as a Reuters survey disclosed.

In Japan, the labor market is rapidly aging for half a century. As a result, it forced the authorities to welcome foreigners in the country’s car factories, farming as well as convenience stores.  

However, in a society, which has long supported its homogeneity, the authorities insist that these steps have nothing to do with welcoming immigration. According to the Reuters Corporate Survey, Japanese businesses make a distinction between employees allowed to work because they have successfully passed suitability tests and low-skilled immigrants.

In June, the Japanese government disclosed its plan to allow five-year work permits for foreign employees in some categories. The government is considering allowing those foreign employees who have passed corresponding tests to remain in the country and even bring their families. Undoubtedly, it’s going to be a revolutionary change for Japan.

According to the monthly Reuters survey, up to 57% of big as well as midsized Japanese businesses employ foreign staff members and nearly 60% back a more open immigration system. However, 38% appreciated allowing unskilled employees into the country to relieve labor shortages.

In general, Japanese companies are still cautious as for accepting foreign employees, as some market experts pointed out. Many Japanese businesses are certainly aware of the necessity to accept foreigners in the long run. Nevertheless, they’re currently attempting to cope with labor shortages by means of investment in automation as well as labor-saving technology. Retailers and restaurants are actively making use of foreigners – they allow them to work up to 28 hours a week.

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