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Business trends

'Work from home' to cost Japanese companies $12.1bn, study finds

Effort to halt coronavirus could reshape work, but productivity is a challenge

The Dai-ichi Life Research Institute estimates the initial cost of online meetings at about 4.9 million yen a year per company. (Photo by Yoshiyuki Tamai)

TOKYO -- Remote work introduced to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus will cost businesses in Japan more than 1.3 trillion yen ($12.1 billion) a year, a study by a private think tank has found, as companies are forced to bear the cost of teleworking in response to the government's declaration of a nationwide state of emergency, including stay-at-home orders, on April 16.

The Dai-ichi Life Research Institute estimates the initial cost of online meetings at about 4.9 million yen a year per company. That translates to 1.3 trillion yen a year, given that around 28% of full-time employees are working from home.

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