Per capita income levels in Japan are among the highest regionally but are set to witness subdued growth through to 2040. Over the medium term, the consumer market is forecast to recover to pre-pandemic levels, driven by easing COVID-19 restrictions, improving consumer confidence and strong pent-up demand. However, a deepening demographic crisis, high gender inequality, fiscal sustainability risks and subdued wage and employment growth will hinder consumer market development in the long term.
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The Country Briefings series examine market potential, economic and consumer trends impacting each country and how they are set to change.
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Economy, Finance and Trade: Understanding the structure, health and potential risks of an economy are important for decision-making within an existing operating environment as well as for expansion strategies. Real GDP growth, inflation and exchange rate fluctuations will directly impact consumer market potential. Import and export trade profiles help gauge how open an economy is to trade and investment, while analysis of government finances can be used to explore macroeconomic stability and susceptibility to economic shocks.
Income and Expenditure: Insights into income, wealth and expenditure of consumers are vital in helping businesses make strategic decisions with regards to which country (or even which region within a country) to enter, which consumer segment to target, which products or services to market, and at which price point. Other factors such as the size and expansion of the middle class and income inequality are also important in helping companies gauge the potential of a country market.
Households: Global shifts in gender, ageing, migration and housing are transforming the size, location, general make-up as well as income and expenditure of households around the globe, with diverse implications for governments and companies. Households insights can help identify the decision-making processes and consumption tastes of different household groups and types within a country, and assess household appliance and digital readiness that is key for formulating market technology and internet strategies.
Business Dynamics: A stable and competitive business environment is vital to operate efficiently and attract inward investment. Businesses can assess these factors alongside challenges such as corruption, political instability and terrorism, also gain insight into business operating environment and make strategic investment decisions. Transport infrastructure, ICT readiness and labour force dynamics will also identify potential issues with a supply chain and the level of workforce skills.
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