News On Japan

Apple Japan hit with $98m in back taxes for missing duty-free abuses

TOKYO, Dec 27 (Nikkei) - Apple Japan is being charged 13 billion yen ($98 million) in additional taxes by Tokyo authorities, apparently for bulk sales of iPhones and other devices to foreign tourists that were incorrectly exempted from the consumption tax, Nikkei learned on Monday.

Bulk purchases of iPhones by foreign shoppers were discovered at some Apple stores, a source said. At least one transaction involved an individual buying hundreds of handsets at once, suggesting that the store missed taxing a possible reseller.

Japan's tax-free shopping allows visitors staying for less than six months to buy items such as souvenirs or everyday goods without paying the 10% consumption tax, but this exemption does not apply to purchases for resale purposes.

Apple Japan is believed to have filed an amended tax return. The company also voluntarily stopped offering tax-free shopping in June. ...continue reading

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The activity of the weather front is expected to intensify due to Typhoon No. 1, leading to widespread rainfall from May 27th, with heavy rain warnings from Kyushu to Kanto by May 28th.

Princess Kako, the second daughter of Prince Akishino and Princess Kiko, arrived in Greece on May 26th, marking her third official overseas engagement. This visit commemorates the 125th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Japan and Greece.

In December 2023, the body of a man was discovered inside a suitcase along the banks of the Tamagawa River in Kawasaki City, Kanagawa Prefecture. Police have arrested five individuals, including the man's ex-girlfriend and her family, on suspicion of abandoning the body.

In an incident that has shocked the local community, a mother and her three children were found dead on May 23 in their home in Shinagawa, Tokyo. The father, who was also found at the scene with neck injuries, had finalized a divorce from the mother just three days prior.

The historic "Soma Nomaoi" event, which boasts over a thousand years of tradition and features armored horsemen parading in a scene reminiscent of the Sengoku period, commenced on May 25 in Fukushima's coastal region. Traditionally held in July, the event was rescheduled to May this year to avoid the severe summer heat after a horse died from heatstroke last year.

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In recent years, more companies have emerged to assist elderly individuals in decluttering their homes when moving into care facilities. While most of the collected furniture and items are typically discarded, one company in Sakai City has taken a different approach by showcasing these items in an exhibition titled 'Toki no Kotodute'.

The former site of the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Athletes' Village, now named 'Harumi Flag,' has officially opened.

A Virtual Private Network (VPN) provides a secure and private connection to the internet by encrypting your data and masking your IP address, creating a secure tunnel for your online activities. This technology has become essential for various reasons, particularly for accessing entertainment content from other countries.

The financial results of Japan's five major trading companies for the fiscal year ending March 2024 shows Mitsui & Co. has surpassed Mitsubishi Corporation to top the list with a net profit exceeding one trillion yen, while Sumitomo Corporation struggled with significant impairment losses. Although these companies have benefited from the weakening yen, the situation is more complex than it appears.

Tokio Marine & Nichido Fire Insurance Co. has revealed that customer information from their auto insurance policies was leaked to competing companies.

Household electricity rates next month are expected to rise across all ten major electric power companies in Japan.

Mercari, the operator of a popular flea market app, has launched a new feature allowing users to list items for sale without initially setting a price. Starting May 23, Mercari's new function enables sellers to list items without deciding on a price upfront, instead allowing them to set a price later based on offers from potential buyers.

The yield on 10-year government bonds, a key indicator for fixed mortgage rates, closed at 0.980% on May 21, approaching 1% for the first time in about 11 years.