Unformatted text preview: well be disruptive. I. INTRODUCTION
One of the more worrying features of the world
economy over the last decade has been Japan’s
prolonged stagnation. From being the fastest growing economy in the OECD area between the war
and the late 1980s, Japan has become virtually the slowest. Moreover, a number of medium-run projections suggest that future growth might well remain very subdued, if only because of the rapid
ageing of the country’s population. The issues that
this picture raises are important, and not just for
Japan itself. Japan is the world’s second largest
economy,2 it is the first, or second, largest importer 1 The authors would like to thank Andrew Glyn and Colin Mayer for a number of helpful suggestions. In this issue, Japanese
names are presented with personal names first and the spelling of Japanese words omits macrons over vowels.
This is the case if GDP is measured at current dollar exchange rates. Measurement in purchasing power parities would make
of China the world’s second largest econo...
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