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Research paper topic: During The 1980s, Japan Had One Of The Most Profitable And Efficient Economies In The World But A Recent Recession Has Forced - 1049 words
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During the 1980s, Japan had one of the most profitable and efficient economies in the world. But a recent recession has forced Japan to make changes and pushed them back, out of the realm of being an economic superpower. This leaves just one question; when analyzing Japans strengths and weakness, is it likely for them to return to the economic status they enjoyed during the 1980s? The answer is no. Because of Japanese false illusions, increasing national debt and deflation, combined with other factors, it is unlikely that Japan will be able to make a full recovery. When analyzing something as complex as a country suffering from a national recession, it is important to note their various strengths. During the 1980s, Japan exploded onto the global economic scene.
The Japanese established themselves among the ranks of the United States and various European powers. One of the greatest strengths enjoyed by Japan is the absence of any military institution. After World War II, the United States, in congruence with the other allied powers, declared that Japan was no longer to have a national military. Just think about that, military expenses account for a great portion of any countries national budget. Japan, now without military, had large amounts of money freed up by this policy (Nishiyama, 2).
They no longer had to endure the expenses of maintaining any standing military, nor did they have to invest money in keeping pace with military technological advancements. Instead, Japan was promised military assistance by the United States, if any situation were to arise. With more money available to the Japanese government, they were able to distribute more to other sectors of the country. This was an extreme boost for the economic situation of Japan and their citizens (Nishiyama, 2). But as time moved on, the United States slowly moved to lessen its role in the protection of Japan.
They allowed Japan to form what is called Self Defense Forces, and gradually began to transfer the responsibility of national security back to the Japanese (Alexander, 3). The concept of Self Defense Forces is pretty evident. It means that Japan is know capable of defending themselves against attack, but cannot make an attack of their own. This has placed a burden on Japan, one that they have not had since the conclusion of World War II. This can be compared to an individual that has worked for the last 50 or so years for the same wages, and then suddenly he is informed of a large expense that he would have to endure, using only his previous wages.
This is what Japan had to deal with, and is still trying to deal with today. Probably the most important strength of the Japanese economy is their relation both economically and politically with the United States. The United States, for one thing, has been one of the most prominent importers of Japanese products (Motohiro, 1). The United States rely on a number of Japanese goods, ranging from automobiles to electronics. Japan, being the small country that it is, needs to export a majority of its domestically produced goods. The United States satisfies this need through their dependence on Japanese goods and by imposing minimal tariffs and taxes on Japanese products (Motohiro, 1).
The United States has been a stable and reliable market for Japanese goods. Before Japan feel into deep recession in the early 1990s, Japan was often relied upon to keep the global economy intact (Yomiuri Shimbun, 1). But in recent years, Japan has not been able to contribute at the same levels as it had in prior years. Presently, the United States has shouldered the weight of the global economy, providing relief to Japan during their own personal downward turn (Yomiuri Shimbun, 1). What is meant by relief is the United States contributing more to the Global economy, so that Japan doesnt have to maintain its previous contributions. The United States realized that if Japan had continued its immense role in the global economy, it would have eventually meant the overall demise of Japans national economy (Yomiuri Shimbun, 1).
With the United States taking on this extra burden, they are allowing Japan to attempt to rebuild their own economic system, without any added global pressures. The United States has also played a direct role in improving Japans economy. It is widely known that Japan is lacking in the area of foreign investment (Rowely, 3). They have always relied on domestic investors to support them. Since this is creating a problem now in Japan, being that the economy is down as well as domestic investment, the United States has tried to step up and cure this looming problem. In recent months, the United States has unveiled plans to deregulate the Japanese economy, thus opening it up to foreign investment (Rowely, 3). Among the sectors included in this plan are: telecommunications, pharmaceuticals, medical equipment, energy and construction, all of which Japan has relied on domestic investment to fund in the past (Rowely, 3).
The United States is proposing to do this by breaking down the trade barriers that exist in Japan. It is widely known that the United States has provided Japanese imports with a stable market, while the Japanese have not returned the favor. American products are expensive and rare in Japan, and it seems that this is the way that the Japanese government wants it. Even now when foreign investment seems to be beneficial to the Japanese, they are against the policy initiatives of the United States. Japanese officials maintain that good economic relations between Japan and the United States are essential to both countries, yet they continually challenge the policy initiatives provided by the United States.
It is obvious that American-Japanese relations are important to both countries, in that Japan is in need of economic assistance, and the United States needs future assistance in the global economy. But the Japanese continue to resist foreign influence and investment. Along with recent policy initiatives, Japanese officials have instituted their own domestic policies. Former Prime Minister Yosano developed a number of policy ideas that possessed great potential for the revitalization of the Japanese economy. First he spoke about a 60 trillion yen program to pay off bad loans and restore the strength of Japanese financial institution (Daily Yomiuri, 1). Next Yosano spoke about initiatives that he had on addressing the so c ...
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