Japan’s current account surplus for fiscal 2016 soared to pre-Lehman shock levels, backed by steady exports to Asia and a fall in crude oil prices.

The results for the April-March period reflect how the Japanese economy is on a steady recovery track thanks to strong external demand.

The surge in the number of foreign tourists to Japan, however, saw the travel balance post a largest-ever 1.28 trillion yen surplus.

The number of visitors to the country grew around 20% in fiscal 2016 compared to the year before.

The figure shows the amount of money foreign tourists spent in Japan eclipsed what Japanese spent abroad.

Finance ministry data showed Thursday that Japan logged a current account surplus of 20.2 trillion yen ($176.9 billion) in the year ended March 31, a 13.1% increase from the previous year and the highest since 2007.

The figure was the third largest ever, and marked the third straight year of growth.

The surplus, which was at around 18 trillion yen in fiscal 2010, sank following the 2011 earthquake and tsunami, falling to around 2 trillion yen in fiscal 2013 as imports of fossil fuels shot up after the suspension of the country’s nuclear power plants.

 

Source: Japan 2016 current account surplus hits pre-Lehman levels- Nikkei Asian Review

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