Japan muss sich öffnen

Nach einem Dutzend Jahren der Stagnation scheint es mit der japanischen Wirtschaft aufwärts zu gehen. Der Schein kann allerdings trügen. Trotz Verbesserungen und Reformen liegt in Japan viel Grundlegendes im Argen.

Der Niedergang Japans ist spürbar. In den späten 1980er Jahren war es in gewissen politischen Kreisen Japans schick zu argumentieren, die Zeit der Pax Americana wäre vorüber und in Asien durch eine Pax Japonica zu ersetzen. Die amerikanische Wirtschaft schien zu stocken, während es mit der japanischen steil bergauf ging. In den Prognosen ging man davon aus, dass Japan im Jahr 2005 die Vereinigten Staaten wirtschaftlich überholt haben würde. Dass sich die Dinge bedeutend anders entwickelt haben, ist ein Spiegelbild der japanischen Trägheit.

Die dem japanischen Niedergang zugrunde liegenden Probleme sind Legion. Die Politiker und führenden Wirtschaftsvertreter Japans verstehen das Konzept der „kreativen Zerstörung" nicht. Zu viele industrielle Dinosaurier werden künstlich am Leben erhalten. Obwohl es manchen Firmen außerordentlich gut geht - wie beispielsweise Toyota und Canon - gibt es wenig Spielraum für neue Projekte und Unternehmer. Würde man die japanische Wirtschaft mit einem Computer vergleichen, hätte sie eine Festplatte voller veralteter Programme und eine nicht funktionierende „Entfernen"-Taste.

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