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Thursday, March 18, 1982The Daily Tar Heel5.
Japanese firms partial to N.C
By JAMEE OSBORN
North Carolina's climate, low taxes, work force and
low rate of unionization have encouraged many Japanese
businesses to locate here, said Walter Johnson of the
North Carolina Department of Commerce.
There are currently 23 Japanese businesses in North
Carolina, nine of which are manufacturing companies.
Two more businesses are scheduled to open soon. The
largest Japanese investment is the $37 million operation
of Ajinomoto in Raleigh, a pharmaceutical company
scheduled to open April 1. Takeda Chemical plans to
locate a $100 million facility in Wilmington.
Martin Bronfenbrenner, a Kenan professor of econo
mics at Duke University, said the Japanese plan to bring
their own supervisors for the Takeda plant. "They are
staying away from the Research Triangle area,' he said.
"They want a low-wage area, which Wilmington is, and
they want a seaport as a base for export."
Bronfenbrenner said the Japanese liked North Caro
lina because unions are so weak here. "The Japanese are
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as anti-union as you can conveniently get," he said.
"There are several auto dealerships that have located in
Tennessee and Ohio to avoid the United Auto Workers
"They don't want to hire any militants, and the UAW
Bronfenbrenner said the Japanese picture of the
American worker is that of an "overpaid lazy bum."
This is because American industry is not careful who
they hire, and once they hire people, they cannot get rid
of them, he said.
Hiroki Nishio, the president of Eslon Thermoplastics
in Charlotte, which employs 120 people, said the main
reason his company decided to locate in North Carolina
was because the land was cheaper than in other states.
Nishio said the concept of employment in the United
States is far different than in Japan. "The far biggest
difference is that workers in Japan stay with a company
for a lifetime," he said.
Kay Sugahara, chairman of the United States-Asia In
stitute, said recently he wanted to put together a package
of $10 billion to help finance projects creating jobs for
Amorjans. He said he had talked to Japanese buines;-
men and would convince them to participate in the pro
ject. However, the Japanese government said they knew
nothing about the project. '
"The Japanese Minister of Finance knew nothing
about this offer, and he would have to approve it,"
Johnson said. "I don't know what his goals were or
what he had to gain by it, and it is hard to believe."
Johnson said Japan had a trade surplus with the
United States, and had worked very hard to get in that
position. "The Japanese cannot afford to lose the south
eastern market," he said. "To get closer to the market, t
they have to manufacture in this area.
"This area is very appealing to them," he said. "The
work ethic is similar to theirs."
John Sylvester, director of the North Carolina Japan
Center at N.C. State University, said the Japanese had
already gone heavily into the west-coast market, and
wanted to build up their market on the east coast. "We
haven't gotten any negative feedback about the Japanese
involvement in North Carolina business," he said. "We
do a significant amount of trade with them, and there is
no resentment among North Carolinians."
Black Experience Workshop
By KYLE MARSHALL
Staff Writer '
The third annual Black Experience
Workshop, sponsored by the UNC
School of Social Work, is scheduled
for Friday in the Carolina Union.
The theme for this year's workshop
is "The Black Experience: Process
and Practice in Communication."
Tony Brown, syndicated columnist
and host of a nationally distributed
television program, will be the
featured speaker. He is scheduled to
speak at an open forum at 7:30 p.m.
Thursday in 111 Murphey Hall.
Several workshops will be con
ducted on Friday by educators and
scholars from across the nation. Prior
to the workshops, which run from
10:45 a.m. to 3:45 p.m., registration
and the opening session will take place
in the Union auditorium, beginning at
8 a.m. Brown also will conduct one of
the workshops, "Social Work and the
The registration fee for Friday's ac
tivities is $10 for students with valid
identification and $20 for all others.
There is no fee for Brown's speech on
Audreye E. Johnson, associate pro
fessor in the School of Social Work, is
coordinating the workshop. "Com
munication was selected as the topic
because it's something we don't do
very well with each other," she said,
"We need to realize that there's a
basic process involved in understand
"We hope the workshop will pro
vide a better opportunity for people to
be open and to think about what they
do in relationships with other
people," Johnson said.
Brown has won several awards for
his work in journalism, community
affairs and race relations. His most re
cent honor, from Lincoln University,
was for a magazine article titled, You
Owe Your Children a Black College!
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