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【特別寄稿】冷たい風のような火「Tokyo one day after the quake」

Let me write in English so non Japan residents can know the reality.

Tokyo is safe and calm today.
The problem is that media is sending only scary messages to the world.
Japan is much more robust than media is telling.

First, the quake was historical large one, but it took place at the north of Japan, far away from Tokyo.
No significant damage in Tokyo.
No office buildings broke down, no road damaged, no major gas, electricity water stoppage so far.
Yes, the transportation system stopped last night in Tokyo as well, but it basically recovered this morning.

I could buy juice and salad at a store near my apartment, located in the center of Tokyo city.
Many shops and restaurants are open.
There is a building construction two blocks away from my apartment, and many construction workers are working there as usual.

So I expect, next week, everything is normal in the capital of the country.
All the major multinational enterprises' offices will be open.
Financial institutions and markets as well.

Second there is nuclear power plant concern, but the problem is, reality is different from what is broadcasted.
No meltdown at all.
Yes, more radioactive emission was observed, but it is still less than x-ray we exposed at the health check.
Meltdown is a wrong translation.
The reactor needs to stop to avoid any potential disaster, but not Chernobyl or Three Mile like disaster is happening.
And more importantly, the reactor is far far away from Tokyo anyway.

Again, Tokyo was not damaged.
And Tokyo as a city is still larger economy than most European countries.
Financial markets should not panic.
I would buy Nikkei if hedge funds sell Japanese equities as a knee jerk reaction.

Third, economic damage to the country, as far as I see, is not much.
Yes, it was a disaster in north of Japan, but the region is largely rural area and economic importance is relatively low.
And the population is also not large.
Japan's economy was much less damaged in reality than it looked like from the TV screen.

Buy Japan if you are sensible.
At least, don't sell due to this disaster.
Long term growth story of the country, however, might be different unfortunately...

(a few updates in early morning of March 13)
- Nuclear plant's building (not the reactor) exploded. Meltdown (not a large scale) took place inside the reactor, but the reactor itself is not broken. At this stage, dangerous emission has not spread out because the reactor is still in place.
- Some large companies stopped factory operations including; Sony, Toshiba, Toyota, Honda or Cannon. There must be at least near term negative impact to the production of these companies, but impacts to corporate earning should be carefully assessed. I would wait for analysts' report next week

※編集部注:本エントリは、冷たい風のような火より許可をいただき、転載いたしました。

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