Japan will support SME aviation parts suppliers expanding further into Asia, first joining forces with Malaysia to ease exports and joint ventures.

Tokyo and Kuala Lumpur will soon confirm plans to work together in promoting the aviation industry. Malaysia is a hub of global aerospace manufacturers, including General Electric, that are taking advantage of lower employment costs there.

Japan’s aircraft industry has taken a blow from Mitsubishi Heavy Industries‘ decision to halt development on the SpaceJet, which would have been the country’s first homegrown passenger aircraft in half a century.

With the Covid-19 pandemic causing unmitigated devastation to the global economy, the travel and aerospace industry are among the worst hit, due to widespread travel bans and movement restriction orders which have been implemented to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

But private-sector analysts expect demand for travel and aircraft to recover, particularly strongly in Asia, once headway is made against Covid-19. While the overall travel situation looks optimistic, many nations remain somewhat cautious, especially since there has been a small resurgence in Covid-19 cases throughout several Asian nations.

The government-backed Japan Bank for International Cooperation will team up with financial institutions in Malaysia to assist in the formation of joint ventures with local companies.

The Japan External Trade Organization, or JETRO, will serve as a bridge linking smaller suppliers with larger peers already in the Southeast Asian country. Smaller businesses will be encouraged to use special subsidies from the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry.

Japan envisions taking similar arrangements to Thailand and elsewhere in Asia, a region where major international suppliers to aircraft giants Boeing and Airbus are ramping up production and assembly.


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