Diet passes bill to lower mobile phone fees
Japan Today -- May 11
The Diet enacted a legal revision Friday aimed at lowering mobile phone fees and spurring competition in the country's saturated telecom market.

Amid criticism that Japanese carriers charge too much compared with other countries, the bill to amend the telecommunications business law, passed by the House of Councillors, bans them from offering plans that cover both the price of a mobile phone and connection fees in one package.

For many years, Japanese carriers have discounted mobile device purchases in exchange for relatively high data usage fees.

Consumers and government officials have said the plans make it difficult to compare the fees charged by carriers.

The issue came into the spotlight in August last year when Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said the three major carriers -- NTT Docomo Inc, SoftBank Corp and KDDI Corp -- could reduce their fees by around 40 percent.

The three carriers control nearly 90 percent of the domestic mobile phone market.

The new law will take effect as early as this fall after the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications compiles guidelines for fee plans.

NTT Docomo unveiled a new plan in April that will cut mobile phone charges by up to 40 percent and also offered to separate handsets and service charges.

News source: Japan Today
Sep 21
Toyota Motor has unveiled the first yacht under its Lexus luxury brand, with a 450 million yen ($4.17 million) price tag in Japan that aims it squarely at the super-rich. (Nikkei)
Sep 20
A Japanese district court has found all three former executives of Tokyo Electric Power Company not guilty in the only criminal prosecution stemming from the 2011 nuclear disaster in Fukushima. (NHK)
Sep 20
E-commerce giant Amazon Japan has announced it will launch a locker delivery service called Amazon Hub at the major convenience store chain FamilyMart and train stations along the Odakyu line. (Japan Today)
Sep 18
Toyota Motor Corp. rolled out a new model of the Corolla on Tuesday, making it the first fully redesigned sedan in about seven years. (Kyodo)
Sep 18
The Japanese government is considering tighter restrictions on foreign investment in industries it sees as key to national security, such as nuclear power and chipmaking. (Nikkei)
Sep 13
Yahoo Japan's acquisition of online fashion retailer Zozo presents an opportunity for the venerable internet services company to bring fresh blood into its e-commerce audience as the business looks to step outside the shadow of Amazon.com and Rakuten. (Nikkei)
Sep 11
In Japan, is there one standard of justice for Japanese executives and another for non-Japanese executives? The forced resignation on Monday of Nissan Motor Co.’s chief executive officer, Hiroto Saikawa, certainly seems to suggest as much. (Bloomberg)
Sep 11
Japan's real gross domestic product retreated 0.5% in July compared with the previous month as rising imports led to negative external demand, the Japan Center for Economic Research reported Wednesday. (Nikkei)
Sep 10
The month between World Suicide Prevention Day on September 10 and World Mental Health Day on October 10 is a good time to start considering the under-discussed topics of anxiety, depression and suicide in our society, especially as they relate to the workplace. (Nikkei)
Sep 10
Nissan Chief Executive Hiroto Saikawa tendered his resignation Monday after acknowledging that he had received dubious income and vowed to pass the leadership of the Japanese automaker to a new generation. (Japan Today)