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Abe’s Arrows of Growth Dulled by Japan’s Three Principles

As Japan’s economy fell into recession last year, Yoichi Uehara wanted to save money at his family firm. Firing workers wasn’t an option: Under Japan’s labor laws, that would have increased costs, not cut them.

“It’s almost impossible to fire people,” said the head of Uehara Nameplate Co., whose 500 employees make more than a million emblems and hub caps a month for the likes of Honda Motor Co. “It would be good if we were able to lay people off like they do in America.”