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Business trends

Menswear and shoe stores in Japan put salarymen in sneakers

Government wants sedentary commuters to do more walking

The Suit Company, a retailer owned by Aoyama Trading, displays a mannequin wearing a suit and sneakers at a store in Tokyo's Shinjuku district.

TOKYO -- Japanese business, once known for its buttoned-down dress code, is increasingly embracing more casual attire, due in part to the government's Cool Biz campaign that encourages people to dress lightly and save electricity during the summer.

Now the Japan Sports Agency is trying to get people into sneakers, not for fashion reasons but for their health. The agency launched a campaign aimed at getting people to walk to work on March 1.

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