Update on the latest governmental measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 (as of 14 January 2021): For visitors from Germany, like from most other foreign countries https://www.mofa.go.jp/ca/fna/page4e_001053.html, entry to Japan is now denied, except for those with a valid residence status and...
German Supply Chain Act
The new German Supply Chain Due Diligence Act (the “Act”) introduces compliance obligations to prevent human rights and certain environmental risks along the entire value chain, from exploiting raw materials until delivering the final product to end customers. The Act follows a global trend of requiring companies to monitor their compliance with human rights and environmental core values.OPEN PDF
Archive – All
Part 2: “Updating” the Competition Act
The recent amendment of the Competition Act is entitled “Act for Digitizing the Competition Act”. The German legislator is the first worldwide to address many of the challenges of digital ecosystems that have been discussed at global level over the past few years.
Public debate in Germany has focused on a new provision aimed at regulating “GAFA” (short for: Google, Apple, Facebook, Amazon), the giants of the data economy (see below section 3).OPEN PDF
Part 1: Unburdening small and medium-sized companies
The German Act Against Restraints of Competition (“Competition Act”) has been amended to address challenges of the digital economy, to make merger control more efficient for small and medium-sized companies, and to implement EU legislation. This reform of January 2021 concerns several aspects that are of relevance to foreign investors. Those aimed at unburdening small and medium-sized companies will be outlined in this newsletter. A subsequent newsletter will give an overview of the tightened antitrust rules for “Big Data” companies.OPEN PDF
Japan is one of the world’s most rapidly ageing societies. Along with the traditionally high life expectancy, the country’s fertility rate is at a continuously low level. According to the Japanese Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications, as of September 2020, nearly 30% of Japanese are already 65 years or older. The effects of this demographic change are noticeable. Along with the increasing competition for qualified junior employees, the ageing workforce poses new challenges for employers.OPEN PDF
Japan continues to attract the interest of foreign investors, wishing to establish or expand their own business presence in this market. Japanese corporate law provides for a broad variety of legal types of investment, the most prevalent of which are described in this newsletter. These include the representative office (I.), the branch (II.), the joint stock corporation (III.) and the limited liability company (IV.). Whereas the stock corporation traditionally enjoys the highest reputation with banks and business partners and for this reason is most frequently chosen for the establishment of a new legal entity, also the limited liability company has been gaining popularity due to its flexible structure and ease to administer.OPEN PDF
Update on the latest governmental measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 (as of 14 January 2021): For visitors from Germany, like from most other foreign countries https://www.mofa.go.jp/ca/fna/page4e_001053.html, entry to Japan is now denied, except for those...
During a recent ceremony at a Buddhist temple in Shinjuku, a priest chanted sutras to memorialise the departed. However, he wasn’t eulogising a person, but hanko: corporate and personal seals used to authenticate contracts and a host of other documents. The funeral for the approximately 50 seals was requested by three companies, including Sakura Internet, which said the chops were no longer needed to validate contracts. Funerary rites to express appreciation to inanimate objects are nothing new in Japan. They are regularly held for dolls, and have even been given for needles, pagers, and Aibo robots. But the ritual performed for hanko signals a shift to digital processes in communications, business, and other transactions across a range of industries and professions.OPEN PDF
With effect of 1 November 2020, Japan has removed 8 countries (including Australia, Korea and Thailand) from the list of countries subject to an entry ban, and added 2 further countries (Jordan, Myanmar) to the list. All European countries, including Germany, are...
Being designated by the Japanese government as a main power source, new policies to proactively promote renewable energy have been adopted in Japan. Among several renewable energy sources, offshore wind power generation has attracted the most attention because, while the lands suitable for land wind power are limited, Japanese waters offer relatively favorable offshore sites for offshore wind power generation, and thus it is necessary for Japan to introduce wind power generation using such offshore sites (cf. the 5th Basic Energy Plan approved by the Cabinet on July 3, 2018).OPEN PDF
The Act to Amend the Electricity Business Act, Etc. for Establishing a Resilient and Sustainable Electricity Supply System (the “Energy Resilience Act”) was enacted effective as of June 5, 2020 upon the passage of the bill therefor by the House of Councilors of the Japanese Diet. The Energy Resilience Act provides for various amendments to energy-related laws, such as the Act on Special Measures Concerning Procurement of Electricity from Renewable Energy Sources by Electricity Utilities (the “Renewable Energy Special Measures Act”) and the Electricity Business Act, and is planned to be enforced starting from April 1, 2022.OPEN PDF