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    Domine Dirige Nos

    Should we laugh or cry?

    Despite being one of the world’s major financial centers, with large scale securities, foreign exchange and bond markets, the number of subsidiary and branch offices of foreign financial institutions in the city has fallen by almost one-third over the past decade.

    The Urban Renaissance Headquarters, chaired by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, and the Financial Services Agency will work together to develop a district where overseas businessmen can go about their day-to-day lives speaking English by providing condominiums, day care centers and medical facilities for foreign residents near Tokyo Station.

    The plan also envisages spacious new offices specifically designed for foreign financial institutions, to be offered in high rise buildings.

    According to the sources, the FSA will discuss its proposal with foreign executives to better understand their needs, with a view to starting to draw up plans some time this year.

    Ah, yes–a JAL Pak Tokyo Village for foreigners! (And it’s to be modeled on the City of London. No chance of that turning out kitschy.)

    It’s already an easy task to find housing, medical care, and other services provided in English. Much of it is expensive, but that’s hardly a worry for people here on expat packages. Spacious offices can be difficult to come by, even for big-guns foreign financial institutions, but providing them in yet another gaijin ghetto (there’s one in the Azabu-Hiroo-Roppongi-Aoyama area that seems to do its job perfectly well already) is not going to draw them back to Tokyo. Money flows where there’s a dynamic economy with ascendant opportunities for investment.

    3 Responses to “Domine Dirige Nos”

    1. Alan says:

      I shouldn’t be surprised, yet I get that sinking feeling in my stomach all the same.

    2. Sean Kinsell says:

      Well, occasionally one of these boondoggles does, in fact, end up not getting executed, so there’s always hope.

    3. John says:

      Yeah, exactly what Tokyo needs, another over-priced neighborhood. Even on an ex-pat package, I was not about to live in the ghetto.

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