Business | Feb 14

Packed with tourists, Japan returns to economic growth

TOKYO, Feb 14 (nytimes.com) - After more than two years under some of the world’s tightest border controls, Japan is once again open for business. Tourist spots are packed. Hotels are booked out well in advance. And it’s getting harder to get a seat at many of the country’s best restaurants.

While that hasn’t been ideal for the many people who flocked to Japan in late 2022 hoping to experience its famous hospitality, it has been pretty good for Japanese businesses.

The country’s economy, the world’s third largest after the United States and China, grew at an annualized rate of 0.6 percent from October to December, government data showed on Tuesday. The modest increase, driven by a recovery in private consumption and spending by visitors to Japan, lagged expectations that growth could reach 2 percent.

The uptick followed a surprise contraction during the third quarter of last year, when inflation and a weak yen drove import prices up and suppressed spending.

The latest quarterly result capped off a second straight year of economic growth for Japan, which has traced a slow and sometimes uneven path to recovery from the economic devastation of the coronavirus.

Japan’s economy expanded in 2022 by 1.1 percent in real terms, government data showed. That followed growth of 2.1 percent in 2021. ...continue reading

Source: ANNnewsCH


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