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Japan's economic security debate needs 'offense' as well as 'defense'

While protecting its interests, Tokyo needs to rethink its openness to foreign investment and talent

The tiny nation of Singapore enhanced its security by attracting financial institutions from around the world. (Photo by Kosaku Mimura)

TOKYO -- A U.K. hedge fund executive looked to relocate much of his Hong Kong staff to Tokyo last fall, wary of political uncertainty in the Chinese territory and encouraged by Japan's stated intention of attracting financial talent from the city.

But the move did not go as planned. When trying to obtain visas or inquire about social benefits and education for his employees, the executive was shuffled among government agencies, making a smooth transition for his staff and their families impossible.

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