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(for full report, please access our Market Research Library)

Motorcycle Industry
While the U.S. continues to dominate the Japanese market for large motorcycles, overall motorcycle sales have been declining, with production hitting 380,242 units in 2010. The current favorable exchange rate makes imports from the U.S. relatively inexpensive for Japanese consumers. U.S. motorcycle manufacturers with cutting edge technology have a good opportunity in the Japan market.

Business Aviation Industry
The business aviation market in Japan remains largely untapped and so far relatively underdeveloped. Only a handful business aircraft are owned and used in Japan. Despite Japan’s economic power and global business activities, Japanese companies continue to face regulatory, logistical, cultural, and attitudinal hurdles to using business aircraft to visit customers or company facilities worldwide.

Space Industry
Japan’s space industry has long been known for applying its world-class industrial and technological know-how toward research and development (R&D). Now, Japan’s space industry is turning its focus from R&D to the commercialization of space technology. The Basic Space Law was enacted in 2008 and Japan is seriously taking steps to foster its space industry. Global demand for satellites is expected to increase especially in developing countries, and Japan hopes to export satellites to these countries. The Japanese transporter referred to as the H-II Transfer Vehicle (HTV) supports the International Space Station (ISS). Japan wishes to increase its role in the ISS to fill spaceflight gaps linked to the retirement of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Space Shuttle. U.S. manufacturers that can supply parts for satellites and the HTV should consider entering this market.

Automotive Parts Industry
The automobile industry is Japan’s primary manufacturing sector. Global demand for Japanese autos is virtually certain to grow in the long term on the basis of existing sales networks and future technologies, with emerging economies holding the best growth prospects. Due to the current global economic slowdown, sales of automobiles and auto parts have temporarily dropped precipitously, and as Japan’s traditional purchasing practices are forced to evolve as a result, opportunities for U.S. auto parts manufacturers to conduct business with Japanese auto manufacturers are increasing. Key areas of current market demand include modularization,
environmental technologies (including electric and hybrid systems), and safety. U.S. auto parts manufacturers with state-of-the-art technologies in the areas of "next-generation" transportation systems, transportation safety, traffic accident reduction, theft-resistance, and electronic components should consider entering this market.


Japanese Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport

Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association

Japan Automobile Importers Association

The Society of Japanese Aerospace Companies

Japan Boating Industry Association


Unit Chief: Gregory Taevs
Commercial Specialist: Sayoko Koto