A Japanese way to improve economic security.. Does it protect the secrets of technology from the Chinese dragon?

A few days ago, Japan’s parliament passed a bill to protect the country’s economic security, which aims to protect Japanese technological secrets and capabilities, strengthen essential supply chains and introduce tighter controls on Japanese companies operating in sensitive sectors or essential infrastructure are operating.
Geopolitical tensions in recent years have prompted Japan to adopt the new law. These tensions have prevented Japanese companies from carrying out their commercial and economic activities in a profitable manner, prompting the Japanese government as well as the private sector to take initiatives related to economic security.
Mitsubishi Electric was one of the major Japanese companies that rushed to set up a department called “Economic Security”. The risks for each department became ineffective in light of the challenges related to economic security.
Mitsubishi’s board believes that before the rise of trade protectionism and the worsening of geopolitical tensions internationally, companies largely based their decisions on aligning themselves with the most profitable activities through cost-benefit calculations, but political events such as Britain’s exit from the European Union and President Trump’s four years in power have shown the fragility of the international business environment.
Moreover, the societal demands that companies place more value on sustainable growth have led them to consider other factors in their business decision-making, not just cost-benefit calculations.
In fact, Mitsubishi Electric is no exception when it comes to managing the consequences of a changing world order. The company is caught in the competition between the United States and China, as it was a supplier of chips to the Chinese company “Huawei Technologies”. , and Mitsubishi Electric was forced to suspend its business with Chinese tech giant Huawei after the US government tightened sanctions on it in 2019.
And dr. Wendy Link, professor of Asian economics at the University of London, told The Economist, “Although the leaders of Japanese companies recognize that strengthening economic security is an urgent task, they have expressed fears that they will incur additional financial burdens, and the sanctions that will be imposed on their companies.” By the government in the event of non-compliance with these instructions, it represents a financial pressure on income and profit rates.”
“Although Mitsubishi Corporation and the nature of the measures it has taken are not an exception among Japanese companies, its decision to improve economic security is of particular importance given the high position it enjoys among Japanese companies,” she added. .
The origins of Mitsubishi go back to 1870, when founder Yatar Iwasaki started a shipping company with three old steamboats.
Throughout the company’s long history, the special relationship between it and the Japanese government has played a major role in its development and the strengthening of its economic position. Under an exclusive government contract, the company’s ships transported Japanese forces to Taiwan in 1874, and later to Taiwan. Satsuma to respond to a rebellion that took place there in 1877, and it was enough to get Mitsubishi Corporation, has the confidence of the government, and the financial rewards it obtained from its ability to face its competitors , as it owned 61 at the time. ships or 73 percent of the total tonnage of the steamship fleet in Japan, and it was also able to move into other commercial activities, contributing to its diversified performance and financial capacity.
For his part, he told Al-Eqtisadiah: Tommy, a researcher in the field of cyber security, said: “China’s increasing skill in the field of high technology is one of the reasons pushing the Japanese government to economic security measures strengthened, as well as a company as large as Mitsubishi, for which economic security has become a major concern. The rise of China has intensified global competition, and rapid changes In the security structure, the risks have been exacerbated by the Russo-Ukrainian war, which required stronger measures to prevent the leakage of sensitive technologies.
However, he added that economic security and the challenges arising from the supply chain crisis due to the Corona pandemic and its worsening with the war confirm that the path taken by Japan and a company as big as Mitsubishi to improve economic security , will be a global path. trend for giant companies in the coming period. In turn, explained to “The Economist” Simon Trass, a researcher in the history of Japan, that “Mitsubishi is one of the icons of the Japanese economy, whether it comes in the past or the present, and its relationship with the Japanese government has always been very important, to the extent that before the First World War the government encouraged the appointment of Yanosuke Iwasaki, the brother of the founder of Mitsubishi, who took over the management of the company after his brother appointed him as appointed governor of the Bank of Japan after relinquishing management of the company to his nephew Hisaya.
“Hisaya being educated in the United States had a significant impact on his administrative logic, as he introduced an administrative system very similar to the operating systems prevailing today,” he added.
However, he added: “But the decisive moment for Mitsubishi, like all the big Japanese companies, was after Japan’s defeat in the Second World War, when it was exposed to more economic problems, and the Allied leadership dissolved all industrial blocs in the country, considering that the military’s alliance with large industrial companies was a reason for Japan’s entry into the war”.
“Although Koyata Iwasaki, the company’s fourth president, assured allies that Mitsubishi was friendly with many business partners around the world and never engaged in dishonest business practices, those explanations did not prevent it from being punished by the victorious allies in World War not. II,” he added.
The punishment of the allies put an end to much of the power and powers that Mitsubishi possessed in the period before the Second World War, and the punishment reached the point of dissolving the company and the use of the brand name or the Mitsubishi -company logo, but later this ban was canceled and the company got its name back and was re-established, but the new Mitsubishi maintained One of the cornerstones of its business logic from the moment it was founded is to have a special relationship with the Japanese government to maintain, no matter how harsh the weather.
Indeed, after Hurricane Isoan in late 1959 and its casualties and losses, Mitsubishi received a government order to start a new era of meteorological monitoring systems.
During the 1950s and 1960s, and the rapid growth of the Japanese economy, largely due to the impressive growth in consumer product manufacturing and the expansion of consumer markets, Mitsubishi played a major role, particularly by promoting Japanese consumerism with credit cards.
According to dr. M. J Arthur, Professor of International Economics at the University of Glasgow, said that the success of the Mitsubishi company is based on a set of basic points, the most prominent of which is the maintenance of an institutional identity despite the problems it experienced after the Second World War. War. It has a concept based on a slow growth approach, but steady growth.”
He pointed out that “it appears from the fact that after the economic bubble in Japan during the 1980s and early 1990s, the company emerged relatively healthy with some bad debts, and that the company is now moving beyond traditional manufacturing into new areas have. such as space vehicles and other high-tech fields.” .
The number of employees in Mitsubishi is estimated at about 83,000 employees, and although it is one of the ten largest Japanese companies, it is 112 in the world ranking of companies, and although its profit exceeded three billion dollars last year, its total assets about 180 billion dollars.
This economic and technical situation that Mitsubishi enjoys puts a huge burden on it when it comes to economic security, prompting the company’s public relations officer to tell Japanese media that “economic security policies around the world such as export controls and cyber security are changing rapidly, and every country is trying Security measures are being strengthened, and we may face risks related to economic security as we seek to expand our global business.”

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