Saturday, August 21, 2010

Bangkok and Japan

I don't quite understand when and how Thai immigration charge visa fee. This time, they didn't but previous time they did and before that they didn't. I guess it could be based on their tourist numbers. If an airport were to have transit hotel inside, would it run profitably? I think Dubai has one; others have day rooms that are often booked in advance. I stayed at Novotel to get my 5 hours of sleep and shower. Another chance upgrade to First Class avoided long walks and stands at the airport.
How times change for Japan? A decade and half ago, Japan consumers were exhorted to buy imported products so as to make foreign trade gap palatable to her trading partners, mainly USA. Today, Japan's debt is almost twice that of her GDP, economic growth is slipping and Yen is below 85 to a dollar - 15 year low. I don't quite understand why Yen gets stronger when her economy gets battered? In most countries it's the opposite. Is it because its export driven economy but this didn't happen in case of Singapore. I must seek answer to this question that has bothered me for long. An interesting illustration of Japan debt : If one were to stack 1000 yen note, her 860 trillion debt would be 2500 times the height of Mount Fuji .
With this thought, I am now heading to Japan. One of the great places to visit that preserves her nature, culture, history and tradition.


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