Japan’s Nuclear Radioactive Fallout Starting To Wreak Economic Havoc

Japan’s Nuclear Radioactive Fallout Starting To Wreak Economic Havoc



The economic toll of the Fukushima nuclear disaster is starting to hit Japan in some very hard ways. Here are some of the latest headlines grabbed from the slew of bad economic news coming out of Japan.

M&G reports that a 70 percent loss drop in business has hit one restaurant and estimates that 1 in 4 will be force to be closed due  to Japan’s nuclear disaster:

Radiation fears forces closure of Japanese restaurants

Hong Kong – One in four Japanese restaurants in Hong Kong face going out of business because of a decline in customers due to fears over radiation, a news report said Monday.

The warning came from restaurant industry experts following the closure of one of the city’s top Japanese restaurants at the weekend.

The South China Morning Report said the Yaegiku Japanese Cuisine restaurant in Tsim Sha Tsui closed Friday after reporting a 70 per cent drop in business since the earthquake and tsunami triggered the nuclear crisis at Fukushima.

Source: Monsters and Critics

Bloomberg reports that China has banned all imports of Japan steel after radiation was detected in nearly all cargo imported.

China Stops Ordering Japanese Scrap Steel on Radiation Risk, Umetal Says

Chinese buyers stopped new orders of scrap steel from Japan and blocked some existing cargoes because of concern over radiation from a crippled nuclear plant, researcher Umetal.com said.

China, the second-biggest buyer of scrap metal from Japan, “stopped taking new orders shortly after the radiation problem was detected and almost all cargoes from Japan were prohibited unless provided with a third-party guarantee,” Zhao Ziyi, an analyst at Umetal.com, said from Beijing. Umetal controls H&C S Holdings Pte Ltd., a Singapore-based scrap metal trader.

Scrap prices are falling after the March 11 earthquake increased supply in Japan, the world’s biggest exporter of scrap steel after the U.S. Concern over radiation leaking from Tokyo Electric Power Co.’s Fukushima Dai-Ichi plant has also disrupted exports of milk products and vegetables.

“Unless the situation at the plant changes, Japan will face difficulty exporting scrap, further loosening the supply- demand balance,” said Shinya Yamada, a Tokyo-based analyst at Credit Suisse AG. “China is also likely to shift purchases to the U.S. and Russia.”

Scrap from collapsed buildings to junked cars is recycled into new steel by melting in electric arc furnaces. Japan exported 6.47 million metric tons of scrap iron in 2010, of which China accounted for 42 percent, according to data from the Japan Iron and Steel Recycling Institute.

The price of scrap iron Tokyo Steel Manufacturing Co. pays at its Okayama plant has fallen 11 percent to 37,000 yen a ton since March 11.

Source: Bloomberg

Bloomberg also reports quarterly outlook index of sentiment among big manufacturers dropped 2 points indicating pessimistic output number. The worries are coupled with concerns about radiation in Japan beef.

Japan Quake Recovery, Atomic Concerns Drive Demand for Copper, Iron, Beef

Tankan Survey

The quarterly outlook index of sentiment among big manufacturers is seen falling to minus 2 in June from 6 in March, the biggest drop since September, according to a breakdown of the Bank of Japan’s Tankan survey released in Tokyo today. A negative number means pessimists outnumber optimists.

Cattle futures in Chicago have surged to a record as demand for U.S. beef rose in Japan amid concern that radiation from the stricken nuclear plant will contaminate food supplies.

Source: Bloomberg

The Start reports that basic necessities are still flying off the shelves due to radiation.

Trying time amid the radiation

As anxiety mounts over the rise in radiation levels, some run for their lives while others head to the stricken zone to help those left behind.

BOTTLED water sold out at stores in Yokohama and Yokosuka, following reports of a spike in radiation levels in Tokyo tap water.

The heavier bout of hay fever this spring caused us to run out of tissue paper sooner. When I rang a drugstore near my home, I was told that the stock of toilet rolls and tissue paper had arrived but was running out fast.

My husband quickly drove to the drugstore as I prepared lunch. Koji came back with only a packet of toilet rolls. Each customer was entitled to buy either a packet of 12 toilet rolls or five boxes of tissue paper. Tissue paper sold at the supermarkets further away was more expensive and driving there would use up more petrol. So we resorted to using toilet paper.

The anxiety over radiation exposure is driving many pregnant women from Tohoku region and Tokyo to the Kansai region to give birth. A Chinese national who had overstayed in Japan actually turned himself in so that he could be deported to China!

While some people run for their lives, others from prefectures like Niigata and Kobe – which had received help when they were stricken by earthquakes – went all out to reach out to the victims. Even the yakuzas (crime syndicates) quietly supplied necessities and provided temporary shelters.

Source: The Star

Categories: FUKUSHIMA

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