The Japanese economy is the second largest in Asia, and the third largest worldwide. Average per capita GDP is also among the highest in the world, and nearly four times as great as China’s. And unlike the top-heavy U.S., where ten percent of the population owns half the wealth, Japanese income is distributed evenly across a large and robust middle class. The Japanese consumer has ample buying power.

But even with its affluent consumer base, there is a further reason for establishing a strong presence in the Japanese market: the visibility and prestige offered by East Asia’s trend-setting leader. When consumers and businesses in the region’s other advanced economies – those of China, South Korea or Taiwan – look for new ideas, it is to Japan. Whether consumer goods, manufacturing technology or business innovation, Japan is the benchmark and beacon for the rest of Asia.

And today, more than ever before, Japan is open to the importation of products and ideas from abroad. In fact, there has never been a year with better potential than 2021 for foreign product entry to Japan. The global pandemic of 2020 caused the cancellation of trade shows for much of the year, leaving Japanese businesses with no means of discovering new concepts for consumers and businesses. If your company is looking to expand into Japan, now is the time.