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1. Japan May Give 100,000 Yen in Cash to Children Under 18

The Japanese government and ruling party are considering providing 100,000 yen ($880) each to children aged 18 or younger in an attempt to ease the impact of the outbreak, Kyodo News reported on Nov. 5. If all goes well, the cash distribution plan will be incorporated into a new economic stimulus package worth “tens of trillions of yen” that Prime Minister Fumio Kishida plans to enact in mid-November. But some are wary of handing out so much money in cash without regard to income levels. As many as 20 million children would be eligible for the benefit, which would cost about 2 trillion yen, at a time when Japan is already carrying the most significant debt of any country, more than twice the size of its economy.

2. All Nippon Airways and Virgin Orbit to Cooperate in Satellite Launch Business

All Nippon Airways Holdings Inc. and Virgin Orbit Inc. said they had signed a memorandum of understanding to cooperate in the business of launching satellites from aircraft in Japan, Kyodo News reported on Nov. 5. The two companies will aim to launch 20 satellites within ten years, starting in 2022, by launching Virgin Orbit’s jets from an airport in Oita Prefecture in southwestern Japan. ANA’s parent company, All Nippon Airways Holdings, will finance the construction of mobile ground support equipment to prepare Virgin Orbit’s LauncherOne rocket system. ANA will also be responsible for obtaining regulatory approvals and marketing in Japan.

3. Three Major Steel Companies Raise Final Profit for the Year

The three steel giants Nippon Steel Corp, JFE Holdings Inc, and Kobe Steel announced their group-wide financial results from April to September. All three significant steelmakers raised their final profit forecasts for the current fiscal year, NHK reported on Nov. 5. With the improvement of the CCP virus epidemic and the normalization of economic activity, demand for steel products in the automotive and other manufacturing sectors has recovered, and prices for steel products have been raised against a backdrop of rising raw material prices such as coal and iron ore. As a result, Nippon Steel Corp. revised its forecast to 520 billion yen from 370 billion yen, JFE Holdings Corp. revised its forecast to 250 billion yen from 240 billion yen, and Kobe Steel Co. revised its forecast to 50 billion yen from 40 billion yen.

4. German Warships Visit Japan for the First Time in Nearly 20 Years

The defense minister inspected a German naval frigate docked in Tokyo port, indicating Japan’s further developing defense cooperation with Germany, ANN reported November 5. The docking of Bavaria not only symbolizes the strengthening of bilateral ties but also provides a springboard for further development of defense cooperation between Japan and Germany in the future,” he said. “The frigate Bavaria has been conducting joint training exercises with the Self-Defense Forces in the southern waters of the Kanto region since April 4 and docked in Tokyo at around 2 p.m. on April 5. Bavaria’s purpose is to monitor North Korea’s “maritime trade” practices. The country transits goods at sea in violation of U.N. sanctions and curb the Chinese communist state’s growing influence in the Indo-Pacific region.

5. COP26: Japan Did Not Participate in the “No Coal” Statement

The Sankei Shimbun reported on November 5 that efforts to move away from coal, which emits large amounts of carbon dioxide (CO2), are accelerating at the 26th Conference of the Parties (COP26) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). On the 4th, the U.K., which chaired the meeting, announced that more than 40 countries had endorsed a statement aimed at phasing out coal-fired power generation. However, Japan, the United States, the Communist Party of China, Australia, India, and other countries did not join the statement, revealing a gap in the fight against coal. According to the British government, 190 countries and institutions have endorsed the information, including financial institutions and companies.

6. Honda Cuts Fiscal 2021 Net Profit Outlook and Car Sales Target amid Chip Shortage

Honda Motor Co. on Friday cut its net profit outlook for the current business year by 17.2 percent to 555 billion yen ($4.9 billion) as parts shortages prompted a sharp cut in its car sales target and soaring raw material costs put pressure on the bottom line, Kyodo News reported on Nov. 5. Meanwhile, sales are now seen at 14.60 trillion yen, down from their previous estimate of 15.45 trillion yen. However, the latest sales outlook still represents a 10.9 percent increase over the last fiscal year. Honda has further lowered its annual vehicle sales target for fiscal 2021 by 650,000 units to 4.2 million. This figure is lower than the 4.55 million units sold in fiscal 2020.

【Himalaya Japan Galaxy- Alpha Planet】
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