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Japan immigration

Foreign workers left high and dry in Japan's coronavirus economy

Rigid rules keep laid-off participants in trainee program from going where need is greatest

Foreign workers are essential to keep farms running in such areas as Gunma Prefecture, known for its vegetables.   © Reuters

TOKYO -- The Vietnamese woman came to Japan to work for a sushi producer in the greater Osaka region under a program for trainees, only to suddenly find herself jobless and evicted from employee housing. The company had laid her off in late April over shrinking sales, forcing her to take refuge in a shelter.

Meanwhile, farms in Japan are desperate for help in the fields.

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