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Economy

Japan's farmers, fishers could double Asian exports by 2021

Marketing of regional brands will help meet demand surge, government says

Japan's popular Yubari melons create roughly 360 million yen in value each year, the government says.

TOKYO -- Accentuating Japan's valuable regional brands could help the country more than double its agricultural, forestry and fisheries exports to other Asian nations by 2021, a government report says.

Asia's latent demand for Japanese farm, forest and marine products will reach 1.1 trillion yen ($10 billion) in 2021, the Cabinet Office wrote in a report on Japan's regional economies released Friday, citing sources including the International Monetary Fund. Exports of those products to Asia totaled 500 billion yen in 2016.

Brand-name products from around Japan, including prized cantaloupe grown in the Hokkaido city of Yubari and premium mackerel caught in a particular area in Kyushu, could help make the most of this growing demand. The Yubari brand creates roughly 360 million yen in value each year, the report said.

This brand appeal also was shown to benefit tourism in regional areas. An increase of 1 point on the year in an index measuring the public's interest in various prefectures was correlated with an average 0.16-point increase in occupancy rates for inns and hotels in any such area.

(Nikkei)

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