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NOTES

February 22, 1988

Flush with yen, the Japanese have looked beyond the United States to spread their investments. Direct Japanese spending abroad totaled $22.3 billion in the fiscal year ended March, 1987, up 87.1% from the year before, according to Japan's Ministry of Finance.

Investments in the United States accounted for nearly half that total--$10.17 billion, up 88.4% from the year before. Meanwhile, Japanese investment was up 79.7% in Europe, 81.2% in Latin America and 62.2% in the rest of Asia.

Spending worldwide continued to rise during the first six months of the current fiscal year, climbing 69.9% to $15.8 billion.

Small and medium-size Japanese companies made 599 investments overseas, up from 318 the year before. The data, compiled in a study by the Japan External Trade Organization, reflected the second boom in overseas investments by such firms since the early 1970s.

While acknowledging that direct investment abroad was important to the restructuring and globalization of Japanese firms, the report called on them "to make efforts to preclude investment friction and to pay consideration to the social structure of the host countries."

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