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The procedure for foreign companies planning to launch and start a business in Japan

As shown below, the following four steps need to be taken when we help your business launch in Japan

1. Choosing the right company type

It is necessary to select the company type most suited to your company from the following: (i) Branch, (ii) Subsidiary (Kabushiki-Kaisha), or (iii) Affiliated company (Goudou-Kaisha).
(i) Branch: The most convenient type when considering setting up an overseas base for business in Japan
(ii) Kabushiki-Kaisha: Responsible for the asset limit invested by the investor
(iii) Goudou-Kaisha: Responsibilities are limited to the amount of assets invested by investors, however, there is a high degree of flexibility in self-governance and the creation of articles of incorporation

2. Certification of articles of incorporation

It is necessary to determine the basic matters of the corporation (i.e. company name, business description, head office address, board members, investors, etc.)
It is necessary to visit a notary public office in order to have the articles of incorporation verified and checked that they all precisely in order.

3. Payment of capital

The founder is to open a bank account in Japan in order to transfer the capital into it.
It is necessary to take a photocopy of the passbook page detailing the actual payment and create a payment certificate. This is to be filed together with the photocopy.

4. Applying for company registration

For this step, it is necessary to apply for company registration at the Regional Legal Affairs Bureau located within the jurisdiction of your head office.
Following application, the registration will be complete only if there are no items missing and after any needed corrections have been amended.

Consultation services

The Tokyo One-Stop Business Establishment Center (TOSBEC)

This consultation service, which is operated jointly between the national government and Tokyo Metropolitan Government, works as a one-stop-shop regarding government procedures required for founding a company and starting a business. This includes certification regarding articles of incorporation, company registration, and notification of incorporation, taxes, social security, and immigration. A counsellor from a relevant ministry or agency will be on hand to answer your questions and provide support up to the point of submitting your application forms. This consultation service is available in English.
Click here to find out more.

The Business Development Center Tokyo

This is a comprehensive, one-stop consultation desk that provides business and living support to foreign companies interested in starting or developing their business in Tokyo.
Click here to find out more.

Invest Japan Promotion Division of Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO)

This division supports foreign companies interested in investing or expanding their business in Japan.
Click here to find out more.

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