Ninety percent of major Japanese companies expect the country’s economy to expand in 2022 in hopes that the aftermath of the coronavirus pandemic will subside, a poll by Kyodo News found Thursday.
The survey of 111 companies, including Toyota Motor Corp. and Sony Group Corp., also showed that companies are increasingly joining global greenhouse gas containment efforts and striving to ensure economic security, with an emphasis on chip supply chains and energy resources, amid intensifying rivalry between the US and China .
The survey found that 75 percent of companies expect moderate economic growth next year, followed by 15 percent who said the world’s third largest economy will grow in 2022.
Five percent assume that economic conditions will remain unchanged, while no company is forecasting a moderate decline or decline.
As multiple responses were allowed, 93 percent of companies anticipating economic expansion said they believed so because of advances in coronavirus vaccinations, while 83 percent led the recovery in consumer spending and 72 percent hoped that coronavirus vaccination would ease. Put restrictions on economic activities.
Despite the optimistic outlook from companies, concerns about the pandemic remain as the government’s vaccination campaign remains slow and the highly contagious Delta variant drives cases of infection nationwide, analysts say.
If the infection situation does not improve as hoped, the recovery of private consumption could be delayed and supply chains could be disrupted, according to the respondents in the survey.
As for the current state of the Japanese economy, 56 percent of companies said it was flat and 40 percent said it was expanding moderately.
26 percent of companies expect quarterly sales to return to pre-pandemic levels in 2022, and 16 percent expect a recovery to occur in 2023 or later.
However, some companies fared well despite the global health crisis: 16 percent said sales have already recovered to pre-pandemic levels and 5 percent saw no decline in sales.
As Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga’s government pushes efforts to combat climate change with the goal of carbon neutrality by 2050, 94 percent of companies said they are taking steps to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.
The companies surveyed consider it important to promote energy-saving measures in their business activities and to set specific targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
Many companies also said that if the US and China impose sanctions and export controls on each other, they will need to protect supply chains to ensure the sourcing of high-tech parts like semiconductors, as well as energy and mineral resources.
The Japanese government has also focused on enhancing domestic development and production of state-of-the-art semiconductors to reduce the country’s reliance on foreign manufacturers amid a global chip crisis.
Kyodo News conducted the survey between early July and early August, targeting large companies in every sector.