Since the mid-1990s, Japan's regional economic strategy has transformed. Once characterized by bilateralism, informality, and neomercantilism, Japanese policy has shifted to a new liberal strategy emphasizing regional institution building and rule setting. As two major global powers, China and the United States, wrestle over economic advantages, Japan currently occupies a pivotal position capable of tipping the geoeconomic balance in the region.
Japan's New Regional Reality offers a comprehensive analysis of Japan's geoeconomic strategy that reveals the country's role in shaping regional economic order in the Asia-Pacific. Saori N. Katada explains Japanese foreign economic policy in light of both international and domestic dynamics. She points out the hurdles to implementing a state-led liberal strategy, detailing how domestic political and institutional changes have been much slower and stickier than the changing regional economics. Katada highlights state-market relations and shows how big businesses have responded to the country's interventionist policies. The book covers a wide range of economic issues including trade, investment, finance, currency, and foreign aid. Japan's New Regional Reality is a meticulously researched study of the dynamics that have contributed to economic and political realities in the Asia-Pacific today, with significant implications for future regional trends.