NILS Fukuoka Times

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What’s Happening Now in Fukuoka & Japan in April



More Companies Open to Allowing Employees to Work at Home – Nationwide

Teleworking, a work style that features telecommunications technology that allows people to work at any time or place, is becoming common, buoyed by a recent trend to require a review of conventional work approaches, as well as an improvements in the security level of computers. Teleworking has become more accessible to many business people, while facilitating frequent internal communications and other issues have emerged.

Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance last October increased the number of people who were eligible to work from home. Previously, only assistant section chiefs and workers at lower positions could work at home, but now just about all 13,000 regular employees are eligible to adopt teleworking. The company’s paperless initiative enables its employees to work outside the office. It has also gone to computers with a high security level for teleworking to provide the similar working environments available in office surroundings.

Lenovo Japan, the Japanese arm of a major computer manufacturer, introduced teleworking in April last year for all its regular employees, without limiting the amount of teleworking time.


Man Robbed of ¥380 million – Fukuoka

A man reportedly was robbed of a suitcase containing ¥380 million in cash at a parking lot facing a bank branch in Fukuoka on Thursday.

The man, a 29-year-old corporate employee from Tokyo, told local police that he was attacked after he withdrew the money, put it into the black suitcase and left the Fukuoka branch of Mizuho Bank in the busy Tenjin district.

The man was sprayed with something like pepper gas in his face at the parking lot and then had the money stolen, according to the police. He was on a business trip to Fukuoka. Three people fled in a white Honda minivan after the suspected robbery.


Man Arrested over Murder of 9-Year-Old Vietnamese Girl – Chiba

According to the Japan Times, a 46-year-old man was arrested Friday in connection with the murder of a Vietnamese girl whose body was found last month near a drainage ditch in Chiba Prefecture. It was revealed that the 9-year-old Vietnamese girl was kidnapped while on the way to school, murdered and then left abandoned near a drainage ditch.

Yasumasa Shibuya, who claims to work in the property leasing business, was arrested for allegedly abandoning the 9-year-old victim’s body. His DNA matched a sample police collected at the crime scene, the sources said.

According to the Chiba Prefectural Police, the man was expected to be handed to prosecutors on Saturday and is exercising his right to remain silent. They said Shibuya is the only suspect in the kidnapping and murder.


Emergency Declaration Warns of Coral Extinction – Naha 

The Environment Ministry has prepared an emergency declaration over coral deaths caused by rising sea temperatures from global warming. In an emergency countermeasures meeting of experts held in Okinawa Prefecture on Sunday, the ministry inked out the declaration, which states that coral could die out in the waters around Japan by the 2070s.

The ministry concluded in the declaration that it will mainly promote the development of new technologies to transplant and cultivate coral, and designate coral reef areas to prioritize conservation. It will also promote measures against global warming.

Experts and people engaged in the tourism and fishery industries expressed a sense of urgency over the bleaching and death of coral, seeking early action to conserve coral reefs, which are facing a mounting risk of extinction.

According to an Environment Ministry survey, more than 90 percent of the coral in the Sekisei Lagoon in the prefecture, the largest such reef in the nation, has become bleached, and about 70 percent of it died in 2016. Sea temperatures rose last year due to global warming, and few typhoons approached the area, which kept cold and warm sea water separated. The lagoon experienced mass bleaching in 1998 and 2007. The experts said last year’s bleaching was the worst ever recorded in the lagoon.


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