Japan: The System That Soured: The Rise and Fall of the Japanese Economic Miracle (Google eBook)
M.E. Sharpe, Jul 10, 1998 - Business & Economics
Ten years ago, Japan was predicted to dominate the world's economy. Today, it seems too feeble even to rescue itself from its economic malaise. How could the world's most acclaimed economic miracle have stumbled so badly? Why were most experts in the U.S. and Japan caught off-guard? And why do Japan's leaders still deny the gravity of the situation?
As this book explains, the root of Japan's problem is that it's economy and politics are still mired in the patterns of the 1950s-1960s. Back then, Japan's practices were brilliantly suited to engineering an unparalleled industrial takeoff. But, once Japan became a mature economy in the 1970's, continuing in the same old mold became a recipe for disaster. The Japanese system enshrined cartels and protectionism. It created a dual economy of super-strong exporters but woefully inefficient domestic sectors. It slowly and insipidiously sapped productivity, drove Japan's most effecient companies to invest overseas, and created the financial imbalances that are wreaking havoc today.
Unfortunately, Japan's vested interests and political machines are so dependent on existing practices that resistance to reform is powerful. And yet, warns author Richard Katz, without sweeping political-economic renovation that goes far beyond mere deregulation, Japan is doomed to years of economic stagnancy, financial turmoil, and political gridlock.
The challenging thesis articulated in this book is receiving widespread media attention in the United States and Japan and is sure to provoke continuing debate and controversy.
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