Letters to the Editor

Dear Editor,

I found your article about CBRE and real estate in Tokyo to be highly interesting. Tokyo is obviously a prime market for such real estate services, and I would be very interested to know more about how CBRE can find closed market deals, and what their strategies are for dealing with landlords used to a more docile Japanese tenant base.

Letters to the Editor

The worst thing about being a tenant in Japan is the hidden charges when leaving an apartment along with key money when entering a place. I wonder if commercial rental practices, being forced onto the economy by foreign companies like CBRE, will trickle down to the private rental market as well.

From what I’ve observed of Japan, probably not!

Andrew Cockburn
Kagawa Prefecture


Dear Editor,

I was encouraged to read Mr Thomas’ exhortation in the last letters page for Shinzo Abe to turn his attentions to the Japanese economy. Too much of his time in office has been spent either pursuing lofty ideals, such as requiring the teaching of patriotism in schools and revising Japan’s pacifist constitution, or responding to various scandals.

Despite the defeat in the recent upper house elections, the unconvincing state in which the opposition Democratic Party of Japan also finds itself appears to offer Mr Abe another chance. Although a period of political turbulence is perhaps the most likely outcome, Mr Abe has tried to restore an element of stability with his recent cabinet reshuffle, which sees the return of a number of veteran politicians.

Such an experienced and hopefully scandal-free cabinet should be able to provide the support that Mr Abe will need if he is to focus the political agenda on the required domestic and economic reforms. However, there is a danger that the stability created by the return of the old guard will come at a cost of the dynamism that Mr Abe needs to introduce these reforms and win back the support of the electorate. Whether Mr Abe can lead his new cabinet through the introduction of the desired reforms will perhaps be the ultimate test of his prime ministership.

Pete Mason



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