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Japan Inc.'s shift to domestic production interrupted by strong yen

Automation offers one answer as companies face higher costs at home

Japanese companies expect to produce a higher percentage of goods at home five years from now.   © Reuters

TOKYO -- Corporate Japan is at a crossroads over domestic production as exchange rates, labor costs, automation and consumer tastes pull companies in opposing directions.

Japanese manufacturers had been steadily moving production of appliances and everyday goods back to Japan over the past few years, but the appreciation of the yen is making domestic production relatively more expensive.

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