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Labor shortage hampering Japan’s post tsunami recovery

Tokyo, Feb 24 (EFE).- A growing labor shortage in northeastern Japan, which was struck by the 2011 tsunami, is hampering the economic recovery of the region five years after the tragedy, said an academic from a leading university of the region.
More than 45 percent of the companies in the area that were surveyed, reported a shortage of personnel, said Satoru Masuda, Professor of Regional Planning at the Tohoku University and President of the Research Center for Earthquake Restoration, at a press conference in Tokyo.
This is a 2.2 percent jump over 2014 and 66 percent higher than that reflected in the 2012 survey, a year after the earthquake and subsequent tsunami, which struck the northeastern coast of the archipelago and left over 18,000 people dead and missing.
The sectors most affected by this include fishing, which was decimated by the catastrophe, and the retail sector.
According to Masuda, the retail sector has been greatly affected by the progressive decline in population in the three worst-affected prefectures (Iwate, Miyagi and Fukushima), from where almost 90,000 people (more than 6 percent of the population) have fled since 2011.
Almost all the people who fled the region immediately after the tsunami and accident at the Fukushima nuclear plant decided not to return and this has hugely affected the retail sector, Masuda explained.
The problem, he added, is that many traders staying in temporary facilities the government allocated them to keep this sector alive, are not being able to get funding to reopen their businesses.
If they leave, many residents’ well-being will be affected and they will end up following their footsteps, he concluded.
The data provided by Masuda also shows the construction sector, which led the region’s recovery, peaked in 2013, and even though it is still better off than other sectors, has already begun to decline.

February 25, 2016 - Posted by | Fukushima 2016 | , ,

1 Comment »

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    Comment by facebook | March 20, 2016 | Reply

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