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It is hard to start up your own business in your country. It is even harder to run a new business in foreign countries. To start a business in Japan, you need to speak Japanese and understand Japanese business cultures. There are many things to consider before starting a business in Japan. One important thing for a foreigner to do a business in Japan is VISA. There are more than a dozen types of VISA in Japan and the requirements as well as the methods to get each of them are different.
For a foreigner who wants to start a business in Japan, if you do not have a VISA that allows you to work in Japan, you should apply for VISA type ‘Investor/Business Manager’. The length of this VISA type is between 1 to 3 years. However, before asking for this VISA, it is necessary to establish a company with a capital of 5 million yen or more. That is, you need to have a physical office space in Japan and 5 million yen investment in the business. A company can be established regardless of VISA type. A foreigner with a tourist status can also establish a company. However, he/she is not allowed to run a company without an appropriate VISA. (The investment amount and the supporting documents may vary depending on the size of the business.)
In case that you are not eligible for VISA ‘Investor/Business Manager’ (lack of the amount of investment, etc.), you should find Japanese partners or other foreign investors, and apply for another type of visa status such as ‘Specialist in Humanities/International Services’, etc.
For more information regarding the VISA application, please check the following URL: http://www.juridique.jp/immigration.html
I hope this article useful for everyone who would like to start a business in Japan.
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