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  • 11 Jul 2018 3:54 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    On the evening of Thursday, 28 June, the ANZCCJ, together with the New Zealand Embassy, had the pleasure of hosting the Deputy Secretary for Trade and Economic Affairs from NZ Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Mr Vangelis Vitalis. Vitalis, previously served as New Zealand’s Chief Negotiator for the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) (MFAT's CPTPP website) and was the NZ Permanent Representative to the World Trade Organization (WTO) in Geneva and provided great insights on the current state of the global economy and trade trends. 

     Vitalis noted that Japan’s economy is the third largest in the world while NZ is fifty-fourth, and yet the two worked well together on global trade issues. He said that there was unease and uncertainty about trade and the impact of globalisation in many Western democracies which reflects a challenge to the two basic assumptions underlying the global economy, which New Zealand’s trade policy has been informed by since the establishment of the WTO in 1995. Number one is that trade rules in place since 1995 would expand and strengthen to reinforce stability, transparency and predictability for trade and second, that markets would expand and stay open (and increase in this way). Vitalis also noted that for 2018, there were expectations that this would be the worst year in terms of additional protectionist measures adopted in a long time, highlighting that while rules matter, they are currently being challenged. In addition, the enforceability of the rules-based system was under threat as a result of the ongoing difficulties regarding the WTO Appellate Body.

     Vitalis then turned to the NZ Government’s trade policy framework for these tumultuous times (see statement to parliamentary select committee). By way of context, he explained that CPTPP was a key element in this and that NZ like many other countries, wants it to form part of the regional architecture and be used to shape the future of trade in the region. Japan was a key commercial priority for NZ not least given the preferences some other countries like Australia and Chile had in the Japanese market through their bilateral FTAs. CPTPP offered a great deal of benefit to NZ exporters to the Japanese market. Zespri alone was set to save $26 million in the first year, as an example. In the dairy sector, which has long been a key industry for the New Zealand economy, whilst NZ negotiators weren’t able to secure all that it wanted in this area, they had still secured estimated tariff savings of $86 million per year once the agreement is fully implemented. Reductions in customs clearance times (48 hours) and self-certification for rules of origin were also noted as a key benefit.

     Vitalis then turned to address NZ’s trade policy, outlining its six inter-related elements: 1) Intensified effort to defend the rules-based trading system; 2) Embedding New Zealand in the evolving Asia Pacific trade and economic architecture; 3) Supporting and sustain global and regional ‘public goods’ that can reinforce the rules-based system, such as ADB, OECD, AIIB and APEC (and NZ’s commitment includes hosting APEC in 2021); 4) Supporting open plurilateralism as a building bloc for the WTO and multilateralism; 5) A new "Trade for All" agenda which has a domestic focus centred on increasing the benefits of trade for Maori, women, SMEs, the domestic regional economy and sustainability; and 6) An invigorated New Zealand economic diplomacy to support New Zealand firms internationally with practical tools and assistance on issues like non-tariff barriers (such as the NTB portal at www.tradebarriers.govt.nz). The comprehensive speech by Mr. Vitalis was then followed by a dynamic question and answer session with the audience.


  • 29 Jun 2018 10:46 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    On Tuesday, 26th of June the Tokyo Chamber of Commerce and Industry, along with the Japan External Trade Organization, New Zealand Trade and Enterprise and ANZCCJ held a NZ Business Seminar in Marunouchi. The seminar provided insight on how to promote business in New Zealand and focussed particularly on Japanese companies that are engaging with high-tech companies in New Zealand and also companies that are importing attractive New Zealand products to Japan.

    The event was opened by New Zealand Ambassador Stephen Payton, and  participants then heard from a number of guest speakers;  Koji Hikosaka Investment Manager at NZ Trade and Enterprise, Isamu Hasegawa from Luminous Productions (Square Enix), Don Roxburgh from Wholesum Japan Company, and Hiroshi Nishijo from Yamaha Motors Ventures and Laboratory Silicon Valley.

    Although the speakers were from a diverse range of industries (Software, Food Importing, and Robotics/Engineering) the presentations dovetailed together with a similar message painting NZ as a country that celebrates diversity, innovation, and providing wide-ranging opportunities for Japanese businesses to partner with innovative companies in a low risk and low regulation environment.


  • 25 Jun 2018 12:22 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    On Thursday, 7 June, this year's installment of the Joint Chamber Summer Cocktails was held at the Roppongi Hills Club and attracted more than 300 business people from different chambers.

    As always, this was an incredibly popular event with tickets selling out very quickly. Attendees enjoyed a wide range of food and drinks while networking and reconnecting with business people from other chambers against the beautiful view of the Tokyo skyline seen from the Roppongi Hills Club.

    This year the event was hosted by the Canadian Chamber of Commerce in Japan and supported by all of the following chambers:

    American Chamber of Commerce in Japan

    Austrian Business Council

    Australian and New Zealand Chamber of Commerce in Japan

    Swiss Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Japan

    Spanish Chamber of Commerce in Japan

    German Chamber of Commerce in Japan (AHK)

    South African Chamber of Commerce in Japan

    Tokyo Chamber of Commerce and Industry

    British Chamber of Commerce in Japan

    Greek Chamber of Commerce in Japan

    Netherlands Chamber of Commerce in Japan

    Finnish Chamber of Commerce in Japan

    French Chamber of Commerce in Japan


  • 04 Jun 2018 11:52 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    On 24 May, ANZCCJ welcomed members to our Office Warming Party at the Chamber’s new location, WeWork Shimbashi. ANZCCJ Chair, Andrew Gauci, and Executive Director, Judith Hanna welcomed and thanked ANZCCJ sponsors in attendance for their continued support of the Chamber and the direction the Chamber Secretariat is taking to remain relevant to our members and the Japanese market. Members had the chance to tour the facilities and a number commented on the convenience of the office, including its hot desks, a membership app that connects all We Works members together and more. 

    A special thank you goes to Treasury Wine Estates and Harnets Corporation for the delicious Australian and New Zealand wines and also specialty cheeses. It was good to see over 70 members enjoy another opportunity to network with one another, catching up with old and new friends as well as some guests from the We Work network. 

  • 04 Jun 2018 11:48 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    On 9 May, the Sports for Business Committee met at PWC’s office in Kasumigaseki to discuss exciting upcoming events surrounding the countdown for 2019’s Rugby World Cup in Japan. At the meeting, we announced that ANZCCJ will run a joint chamber event to celebrate One Year To Go in September. 

    Others shared about the number of opportunities arising as we get close to the big event. One such event is the upcoming Minato Rugby Festival on 17 June at Chichibu Stadium. For those who are interested in buying tickets, please email info@anzccj.jp. We had special guests from the RWC2019 Organising Committee give an update on the recent promotion events to build momentum leading up to the RWC in Japan. One of which was Tokyo City Governor Yuriko Koike who celebrated 500 days to go by unveiling a countdown clock that is now shown in the Tokyo Metropolitan Government building. Celebrations are being held in Yokohama, Sapporo, Fukuoka. 

    A video was played to the committee explaining the construction of the Recovery Memorial Stadium in Kamaishi and the significance this has in the community’s recovery after the devastating 2011 Tohoku earthquake. A game to open up the new stadium will take place on 19 August. The Secretariat will investigate how members of the Chamber can purchase tickets. 

    If you would like to join the Sports for Business Committee, send an email to info@anzccj.jp. Please be advised that priority will be given to Chamber members where attendance space is limited, and non-RSVPs will be unable to join these meetings so do make sure you RSVP. The next meeting will be held on 5 July, so watch out for the event announcement.

  • 28 May 2018 12:59 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    The Dream Collective, whose aim is to drive long-term change in women’s representation at the leadership level, is hosting a Global Diversity Solution Sharing Day here in Tokyo on June 18. They are offering the discounted early bird price to ANZCCJ members. This session , which is particularly suited to HR, Managers and Diversity inclusion professional who want to develop female leaders who want to network and share their experiences, include keynote speeches and a panel discussion from partners such as Unilever and Suntory on how they achieved diversity and developed female leaders. Tickets are available here and include solution workbook, books, drinks and a catered meal.


  • 25 May 2018 12:04 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    The second instalment in the ANZCCJ’s Youth Empowerment Programme took place on 26 April 2018, this time hosting a discussion and Q&A with leaders in Japan’s legal and finance industries. Held at the cozy Yahoo! Lodge in central Tokyo, the comfortable atmosphere helped to ensure that conversation flowed smoothly throughout the night and attendees were able to easily form connections with other like-minded guests.

    Sam Brustad, moderator for the discussion, began the event by introducing the evening’s guest speakers. From the legal field, Catherine O’Connell, ANZCCJ Vice Chair and founder of Catherine O’Connell Law, and Tracy Whiriskey, from Ashurst and member of ANZCCJ Executive Council shared their experiences. Speaking in relation to the finance sector in Japan were Kohei Tsushima, head of Challenger Japan and ANZCCJ Executive Council member, and Aya Haruyama, Macquarie Capital Securities analyst and ANZCCJ member.

    The panel discussion began with the speakers discussing their relation to and the importance of the ANZCCJ in their respective fields. Sam Brustad asked speakers to expound on what skills they found key to a career in Japan. Ms. Whiriskey began by highlighting cultural sensitivities as an invaluable trait for foreigners working in Japan, even noting that it was a trait that she had seen enable some people to succeed even without Japanese language skills. Ms. O’Connell commented on the massive amount of paperwork present in Japan, a difficulty she found she had to overcome, in an increasingly digital world.  As the panel discussion came to a close, speakers were split into their respective sectors of Finance or Law for a Q&A session.

    The night was brought to a close with a great opportunity for guests to discuss and network with the guest speakers and with other young professionals in their fields of interest.


  • 25 May 2018 11:48 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    On 24 April, ANZ Japan and the ANZCCJ co-hosted an economic outlook luncheon. This was ANZ Japan’s first official ‘Horizons’ session, an economic outlook series aiming to share views on crucial macro and market-moving issues, and how they may affect the relationship between Australia, New Zealand and Japan in particular.

    The luncheon began with opening remarks by ANZCCJ Chair Andrew Gauci, who highlighted the role ANZ Japan takes in helping Australian and New Zealand businesses operating here. He also noted the significant increase of Japanese investment made into Australia in recent years, emphasising the importance of Japanese ties to the Australian economy.

    Richard Yetsenga, ANZ Chief Economist and Head of Research, gave the keynote address on global macro trends, covering themes for the Asia Pacific region. Regarding the global economic future, Yetsenga noted: “The sun is out… this is about as good as it gets”. He noted aging populations and slower bank lending growth as factors that will have a key impact on the future of economies worldwide. Mr Yetsenga emphasised in particular the issue of Japan’s aging population, as it is now inside the investment horizon.

    Mr Yetsenga discussed China’s structural reforms, and how they managed to maintain their GDP growth during this development by taking advantage of an upward trend in exports. Discussing exports more globally, he said that not all countries can grow through exports together, as someone has to be the end consumer, a role currently played by the US.

    With these trade trends,  Mr Yetsenga noted that unhappy voters globally were placing blame on free trade agreements, and stressed the need for answers as to why free trade is good for them to be provided.

    After the presentation, a discussion panel was held with Mr Yetsenga and guest speaker Hajime Ueda, Senior Corporate Managing Director of the Nomura Research Institute. Moderated by Andrew Cornell, Managing Editor of bluenotes, the panel further discussed the macro themes, and regional trade and investment opportunities for Australia, New Zealand and Japan.

    Of key interest during the discussion were the value of Australian management talent and Japan’s AI investments. Mr Ueda remarked that management teams acquired in Australia were valuable, and looked forward to expanding such talent internationally. He also noted Japanese society’s present acceptance of robotics as a promising sign in global AI competition.

    Following the panel’s Q&A session, Andrew Gauci asserted in closing remarks that Australia goes beyond mining and resources, and that this is being proven today.


  • 25 May 2018 11:34 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    ANZCCJ was pleased to host Ms Raelene Castle in her first visit to Japan as CEO of Rugby Australia at the chic R2 Supper Club in Roppongi for a Q&A session on 24 April. Joining her was Olympic Gold Medalist and Women’s 7s Captain, Shannon Parry, as well as former Men’s 7s Captain, Ed Jenkins.

    After some light refreshments and networking, ANZCCJ Chair Emeritus Melanie Brock commenced the event by welcoming our Rugby Australia guests and moderated the Q&A session, which focussed on the important issue of diversity both on and off the field.

    During the Q&A, Shannon noted the promising growth she has seen in women’s rugby in Japan. She said that she had felt really welcomed by Japan during her Kitakishi tour. The group discussed the similarities in codes between sports, and how these strategic parallels allow for an easy understanding for growth in the sport in Japan.

    Ms Castle said that it was an honour to be the first female chief executive of Rugby Australia, and noted the significance of Australia recognising the upside of diversity, an area in which she claimed New Zealand had been leading. The group further discussed the encouraging change seen in the world, and especially in sports, in terms of female representation.

    Following questions from the audience, the discussion turned to the interplay between sport and business, with the panel noting the opportunities and willingness of the Australian Rugby community to work with Japanese business. Melanie Brock and Ms Castle agreed that sport represented a bridge between Japanese executives and Australian and New Zealand ones.

    ANZCCJ would like to thank Ms Castle, Shannon Parry and Ed Jenkins for sharing their insights. We would also like to thank Melanie Brock for moderating and all attendees for an enjoyable night.


  • 11 May 2018 11:47 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)


    The results from the Spring 2018 edition of the Foreign Chambers in Japan Business Confidence Survey have now been released. The expectation of healthy growth in the Japanese economy that has been held by businesses since the Autumn 2016 survey has again continued, though this time at a slightly lower level than in the previous survey conducted in October of last year. Respondents remain positive about the outlook for the Japanese economy. Over the next six months, 50 per cent of respondents are expecting some improvement in the economy, while 7 per cent are expecting strong improvement. 

    The response from ANZCCJ members mirrors these aggregate results. 73 per cent of members who responded are expecting improvement and 7 per centare anticipating strong improvement over the next six months. The outlook is similar for the coming 12 months. This optimism is reflected in the performance of companies as well, with 55 per cent of ANZCCJ member respondents having experience improvement in profitability over the past six months, and 54 per cent expecting this to continue over the next six months. 65 per cent of ANZCCJ members who responded are aiming for continued growth in Japan, and we are excited to continue working with our members to help them achieve their business goals here in Japan.

    The full report on the survey and commentary is available here, and a breakdown of the results from the responses submitted by ANZCCJ members is available here. Thank you to all members who took the time to contribute to the survey, which continues to serve as useful barometer of foreign business in Japan.


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