According to the latest annual survey by the Japan External Trade Organization of Japanese companies in Europe, 48.1% are expecting to maintain their current size of operations in Europe and 45.6% are expecting to expand over the coming year.
The survey, which had responses from 843 Japanese companies in 25 countries across Europe, including Turkey, indicates that the main area for expansion is the sales function and particularly promising lines of business were thought to be high value added products like medical equipment, food processing in Western Europe and automotive parts in Central and Eastern Europe and Turkey.
Russia was cited as the most promising target for increased sales from Europe, followed by Turkey, Germany, Poland, India, UK, ASEAN, France, Czech Republic and South Africa. Those who were intending to grow their European business said their reasons for being optimistic were that they thought there was latent demand potential in the region, expecting the economy to have bottomed out in 2012, and also a high acceptance of value added products in the region. Existing relationships with customers in individual countries were also of course a key reason for choosing those countries as a focus for sales growth.
We’ve certainly noticed a big increase in interest and activity in Turkey amongst our Japanese corporate contacts and clients, and today’s news of the first visit by a Japanese prime minister to Russia in 10 years, accompanied by 100 corporate executives, reinforces the possibility that Russia is going to be the focus for 2013. We’re getting consultants lined up for Japan Intercultural Consulting in Russia and Turkey accordingly.
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