Because it has focused its strength on manufacturing rather than "excessive financial capitalism," Japan will weather the global economic downturn, Prime Minister Taro Aso said on April 9.
Aso stressed that the fundamental strengths of the world's second biggest economy remained "working hard with sweat on our faces, and the organizational power to achieve excellent results as a team."
"What has supported Japan's manufacturing is these traditions," he said in a press conference. "If we keep capitalizing on these strengths, the Japanese economy still has huge potential."
Aso pledged to create up to two million new jobs in the next three years with a new growth strategy, partly by boosting renewable energy, elderly care and cultural exports such as anime and fashion.
He also stressed that Japan needed to keep offering development aid to the rest of Asia, calling the region "the growth center of the 21st century."
"The future of Japan and Asia is bright," Aso said. "I hope to share this feeling with you through this growth strategy."
Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2009