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  1. What Kinds of Work Do People Do in Japan?
  2. Where Men and Women Work in Japan
  3. Reviving Basic Industries in Postwar Japan
  4. Japan’s Shipbuilding Industry
  5. Mining: An Industry in Decline
  6. Industrial Policy and Depressed Industries
  7. Consumer Goods Industries
  8. Small Firms in the Japanese Economy
  9. Links Between Large and Small Firms
  10. The Japanese Electronics Industry
  11. Beginning of the Japanese Automobile Industry
  12. The Rise of the Japanese Auto Industry and Auto Exports
  13. The Mobile Telephone Industry
  14. The Computer Game Industry
  15. Shopping Habits and Retail Stores
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Steam train passing man made mountain from coal mining
A train passes by "bota yama," a man made mountain of dirt removed from a coal mine. After the mine closed, the mountain remained.
Photo Courtesy of Yoshihiko Kawaguchi.
Industrial Policy and Depressed Industries
Under the national industrial policies coordinated and developed by MITI, Japan’s Ministry of International Trade and Industry, certain industries were identified as less important for Japan’s future. Companies agreed to phase out these industries in return for government assistance to move into other industries with greater potential. The government passed two laws in 1977, the Temporary Measures for Workers Displaced from Specific Depressed Areas and the Temporary Relief Law for Workers Displaced from Specific Depressed Industries. Companies were required to consult with their labor unions and develop plans to help displaced workers find new jobs.Miners displaced by the mine closings received assistance from programs developed in the 1970s to assist workers in depressed industries. Some who were employed directly by the major mine companies were able to move to other jobs in the same companies. Others received some assistance for retraining. Workers employed by subcontractors in the mining industry lost their jobs before those working directly for the large mine companies. They received less assistance and had more difficulty finding other employment.In the 1980s, the government developed additional programs to assist areas that were depressed because of the decline of their primary industry. One of the main remedies was to try to develop tourism as a new industry.
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