TOKYO — Very strong export gains to the United States led Japanese injection press builders to a healthy first-half of 1997, according to the Japan Trade Statistics office.
First-half exports of injection molding machines to the United States grew by 85 percent, as measured in yen, over the first half of 1996, according to the statistics office, which is part of Japan's Ministry of Finance. Exports to the United States, by far the biggest single-country market, reached 19.1 billion yen during the first six months, up from 10.3 billion yen in the same period of 1996.
When measured in dollars, the first half increase was 65 percent. The difference is attributable to currency changes in the relationship between the yen and dollar. In dollars, Japan shipped $162 million worth of injection presses to the United States in the first half of 1997, up from $98.5 million the year before.
The statistics track the 10 largest export markets. Overall, the Tokyo-based agency reports, first half exports are nearly equal for exports for the entire year of 1996.
Canada showed the strongest growth, as shipments from Japan to Canada jumped 182 percent, to 1.6 billion yen. Taiwan also showed triple-digit growth of 143 percent, to hit 4.6 billion yen. Other markets with growing appetite for Japanese-made injection presses include Hong Kong, where exports grew 31 percent, Indonesia (16 percent), Malaysia (10 percent), and the Philippines (9.5 percent).
Japanese exports of presses to Thailand declined 17 percent, to 4.7 billion yen. Exports also declined to China (minus 25 percent) and Singapore (minus 10 percent).