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Japan

Population: 127 103 388

GDP: 5 007 000 000 000.00 $

Companies & Organizations: 67

Description

 

In 1603, after decades of civil warfare, the Tokugawa shogunate (a military-led, dynastic government) ushered in a long period of relative political stability and isolation from foreign influence. For more than two centuries this policy enabled Japan to enjoy a flowering of its indigenous culture. Japan opened its ports after signing the Treaty of Kanagawa with the US in 1854 and began to intensively modernize and industrialize. During the late 19th and early 20th centuries, Japan became a regional power that was able to defeat the forces of both China and Russia.

 

 

It occupied Korea, Formosa (Taiwan), and southern Sakhalin Island. In 1931-32 Japan occupied Manchuria, and in 1937 it launched a full-scale invasion of China. Japan attacked US forces in 1941 - triggering America's entry into World War II - and soon occupied much of East and Southeast Asia. After its defeat in World War II, Japan recovered to become an economic power and an ally of the US. While the emperor retains his throne as a symbol of national unity, elected politicians hold actual decision-making power.

 

 

Following three decades of unprecedented growth, Japan's economy experienced a major slowdown starting in the 1990s, but the country remains a major economic power. In March 2011, Japan's strongest-ever earthquake, and an accompanying tsunami, devastated the northeast part of Honshu island, killing thousands and damaging several nuclear power plants. The catastrophe hobbled the country's economy and its energy infrastructure, and tested its ability to deal with humanitarian disasters.

Population

 

Population: 127,103,388 (2014)

 

Nationality: noun: Japanese (singular and plural) adjective: Japanese

 

Ethnic groups: Japanese 98.5%, Koreans 0.5%, Chinese 0.4%, other 0.6% . note: up to 230,000 Brazilians of Japanese origin migrated to Japan in the 1990s to work in industries; some have returned to Brazil

 

Languages: Japanese

 

Religions: Shintoism 83.9%, Buddhism 71.4%, Christianity 2%, other 7.8%. note: total adherents exceeds 100% because many people belong to both Shintoism and Buddhism.

GDP

 

GDP: $5 007 000 000 000.00 (2013)

Military Organization

 

Japanese Ministry of Defense (MOD): Ground Self-Defense Force (Rikujou Jieitai, GSDF); Maritime Self-Defense Force (Kaijou Jieitai, MSDF); Air Self-Defense Force (Koukuu Jieitai, ASDF).

Conflicts and Disputes

 

The sovereignty dispute over the islands of Etorofu, Kunashiri, and Shikotan, and the Habomai group, known in Japan as the "Northern Territories" and in Russia as the "Southern Kuril Islands," occupied by the Soviet Union in 1945, now administered by Russia and claimed by Japan, remains the primary sticking point to signing a peace treaty formally ending World War II hostilities; Japan and South Korea claim Liancourt Rocks (Take-shima/Tok-do) occupied by South Korea since 1954; China and Taiwan dispute both Japan's claims to the uninhabited islands of the Senkaku-shoto (Diaoyu Tai) and Japan's unilaterally declared exclusive economic zone in the East China Sea, the site of intensive hydrocarbon prospecting.

Geographical Information and Map

 

Capital: Tokyo

 

Location: Eastern Asia, island chain between the North Pacific Ocean and the Sea of Japan, east of the Korean Peninsula. Japan has strategic location in northeast Asia.

 

Geographic coordinates:

36 00 N, 138 00 E

 

Area:

total: 377,915 sq km

country comparison to the world: 62

land: 364,485 sq km

water: 13,430 sq km

note: includes Bonin Islands (Ogasawara-gunto), Daito-shoto, Minami-jima, Okino-tori-shima, Ryukyu Islands (Nansei-shoto), and Volcano Islands (Kazan-retto)

 

Land boundaries: 0 km

 

Coastline: 29,751 km

 

Natural resources: negligible mineral resources, fish. note: with virtually no energy natural resources, Japan is the world's largest importer of coal and liquefied natural gas, as well as the second largest importer of oil.