Japan Firms Concerned about Coronavirus Emergency Declaration

Economy

Tokyo, April 6 (Jiji Press)--Concerns are growing among Japanese companies over the possible declaration of a state of emergency to ramp up Japan's fight against the new coronavirus, because the extent of the impact from the move is still uncertain.

There is an estimate that the declaration would create a dent of some 3 trillion yen in the country's gross domestic product, with a mood of voluntary restraint seen spreading all at once in many industries excluding food and medical sectors.

If the prime minister declares a state of emergency, prefectural governors will be authorized to impose emergency measures, such as requiring residents to stay home and restricting the use of facilities such as department stores, where many people gather.

Such measures have no compelling power, but "many citizens are expected to strictly exercise self-restraint, considering Japan's national character of being good at acting as a group," said Yasuhide Yajima, chief economist at the NLI Research Institute.

"We are working to clarify which production lines must not be halted and decide how to treat our employees," said an official of a major electronics maker, which is stepping up preparations for a possible emergency declaration.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press