EICN Singapore – Japan’s economy and regional importance in 2024

In early 2024, Japan was surpassed by Germany as the world’s third-largest economy—a title the island nation held for half a century. Yet, this apparent setback was circumstantial, mainly due to the currently low value of the yen. Japan remains a mature and highly diversified economy, an industrial superpower, a world leader in high-end manufacturing and R&D capabilities, and increasingly a key player in regional security. Fifty per cent of all the world’s companies older than two hundred years are Japanese. Its respected trading conglomerates, such as Mitsui and Itochu, have a worldwide presence across sectors and industries like none other—and they are favourites of the likes of Warren Buffet as sound, prevalent investments.

However, Japan is also embattled in a corporate tradition trying to catch up with modern trends, a declining population, a shrinking workforce, and one of the world’s largest sovereign debts at over 250% of its GDP. Moreover, its currency has lost 30% of its value in two years, favouring exporters but hurting its consumers, who are net importers of food and energy. On the other hand, Japan’s importance in the region is growing as geopolitical circumstances pressure companies and governments to choose their alliances carefully.

What is Japan’s expected role as a regional investor in the near future? Will Japan Inc.’s presence in Southeast Asia increase in the coming years, especially as capital outflow from China grows? Given its highly trained workforce and high-tech know-how, is Japan a dark horse waiting to draw investment at an unprecedented rate?

EICN Tokyo’s network director, Dr. Rodrigo González, will be in Singapore to present an overview of the current state of Japan’s economy and business landscape and to share important insights on Asia’s second-largest economy.


Rodrigo González

Director, North Asia of Economist Intelligence Corporate Network

Pamela Ambler

Head of Investor Intelligence & Strategy Capital Markets, Asia Pacific at Jones Lang LaSalle

Sumana Rajarethnam

Director, South-East Asia of Economist Intelligence Corporate Network

Kei Koga

Associate Professor/ Head of Division – Public Policy and Global Affairs Programme, School of Social Sciences at Nanyang Technological University


08:00 – 08:30 Doors open and registration

08:30 – 09:00 Opening presentation

09:00 – 09:45 Panel discussion

09:45 – 10:00 Q&A

Event details


Raffles Hotel Singapore

1 Beach Road, Singapore 189673 Singapore

Meeting room details will be shared upon successfull registration


If you have any questions about this event, or joining our Singapore network please send an email to eicn_sea@economist.com.

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