The industrial development in Japan after World War II - Essay Example

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Japan is said to be the principal trading and technologically manufacturing country of the world. Prior to the world war II Japan was the center of an empire that at times included Taiwan, Korea, Manchuria, much of eastern China, southern Sakhalin Island, and the Marshall and Mariana islands of the southwest Pacific Ocean…
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The industrial development in Japan after World War II
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Download file to see previous pages Japan is said to be the principal trading and technologically manufacturing country of the world. Prior to the world war II Japan was the center of an empire that at times included Taiwan, Korea, Manchuria, much of eastern China, southern Sakhalin Island, and the Marshall and Mariana islands of the southwest Pacific Ocean.After the Meiji Restoration of 1868, the new government launched a determined drive to establish a modern industrial economy anchored in Western science and technology. Modern systems of education and banking were created. The government financed and operated new manufacturing, mining, and transportation ventures, and as they became commercially viable it sold them to private interests. Continued government support led to the development after the 1890s of large-scale, family-based enterprises (zaibatsu) in banking, transportation, and heavy industries related to armament production. Vigorous private initiative prompted consumer industries such as textiles.During the 1920s and 1930s, Japan's industries grew steadily in variety and technical maturity. Manufactured goods such as cement, steel, bicycles, simple industrial machinery, chemical fertilizers, and processed foods gained in importance. Electric power generation also increased sharply during this period. Notwithstanding these developments, the Japanese economy on the eve of World War II was still backward in many respects. Sophisticated machinery, chemicals, and refined metals had to be imported....
Two million of its people had died in the war, a third of them civilians. Air raids had devastated its cities, and at least 13 million Japanese were homeless. Industry was at a standstill, and even farm output had declined. Many Japanese wore rags and were half-starved. All were mentally and physically exhausted. For the first time in its history, Japan was a conquered nation occupied by a foreign power.
Nowadays, we can see a novel Japan excruciating with energy and ambitions. Its economy is counted among the top most economies of the world. The population has become affluent and the country's main islands are connected together with a network of tunnels and bridges bullet trains keep on running at a speed of around 195 kilometers per hour.
Prosperity created new challenges, however. The price for Japan's success included explosive urban growth and overcrowding, water and air pollution, and damage to many of the nation's scenic treasures. Hills were hacked down for factory sites or home-sites, while mountains were defaced by highways to accommodate city tourists. For a time, Mount Fuji, Japan's highest mountain peak almost disappeared from sight because of smog created by factories and cars. Today, that smog is gone, thanks to some of the world's most rigorous standards for auto emissions and industrial air pollution. In other areas, Japan still struggles to balance development with environmental protection.
It was once predicted that Japan would become the world's largest economy by 2000, but the picture has changed dramatically. Japan's real-estate and stock markets collapsed in 1989-92, beginning the longest recession since World War II. The economy remains weak despite tax cuts and massive government spending. Yet export-oriented Japan still runs a ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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