Fast Retailing Co., operator of the Uniqlo casual clothing chain, said it will invest 300 million yen ($3.7 million) in economic recovery efforts in disaster-stricken areas of Japan.
The company selected five nongovernmental organizations to work with to help rebuild communities and assist victims.
Two of them provide funds to support new businesses or reconstruct businesses that were affected by the quake.
“You can start a business anywhere in Japan,” said Tadashi Yanai, chairman and president of Fast Retailing, on Feb. 28. “If there are no industries, no jobs will be created.”
Yanai said his company is particularly keen to support young people who start new businesses, and he is considering cooperating with other companies.
“I believe many companies share my thoughts,” he said.
Yukihiro Nitta, Fast Retailing Group executive officer, said: “Providing business know-how is also a form of support that is needed. If we receive a specific request, we would consider it.”
Uniqlo also plans to open temporary stores in disaster-hit Kesennuma, Miyagi Prefecture, and Kamaishi, Iwate Prefecture, for a year starting March 9.
The company will also reopen a store in the Haramachi district of Minami-Soma, Fukushima Prefecture, which had been closed following the March 11 disaster.
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