This page contains answers to frequently-asked questions about the Foreign Press Center/ Japan (FPCJ). These answers include the activities and outline of FPCJ, the privileges that our supporting members have, etc.
- What is the FPCJ?
The mission of our center is dissemination of information from Japan to other countries by proactively supporting foreign media in Japan as a koueki-zaidan-hojin nonprofit organization. We are sometimes mistaken for, FCCJ, the Foreign Correspondents Club of Japan, which is an organization of foreign correspondents in Japan, who set it up themselves to effectively gain access to news sources.
- Where do the resources of FPCJ come from?
The main sources of our funding include fees for work done for government offices, and also donations by supporting members. Our center was originally established in 1976 through funding provided by the Nihon Shinbun Kyokai (Japan Newspaper Publishers & Editors Association) and Keidanren (Japan Business Federation). We began as a nonprofit organization (zaidan-hojin) and registered under a new law as a public interest incorporated foundation (koueki-zaidan-hojin) in 2011.
- What kind of service does FPCJ provide to foreign journalists?
FPCJ facilitates news gathering by the foreign press in Japan and dissemination of information from Japan to other countries through the media. There are currently 408 reporters affiliated with 142 media organizations from 30 countries and regions working in Japan to transmit news from Japan to the world (data gathered by the FPCJ as of January 31, 2020; for list by country/region, click here). Many journalists from media organizations abroad also visit Japan for news gathering.
- How much does it cost to organize a press tour and what is the impact?
The cost of press tours can vary depending on the destination, the number of participants, the length (same-day return, staying overnight), and other factors. The main costs include transportation from Tokyo and back (Shinkansen/airplane tickets, etc.), transportation during the tour (chartered bus), accommodations, meals, and interpreter fees. When commissioning the FPCJ to organize the tour, there will also be separate charges for services provided (planning and coordination fees, tour advertising fees). For an estimate, please contact the FPCJ Media Relations Division with a specific plan.
Foreign Press Center/Japan
Tel: 03-3501-3405 or 03-3501-5070
*Please replace “at” with “@” when you send the Email.
Cooperation for Press Tours
Reporters on the press tours write articles, take photos, or create videos based on what they have observed during the tours. This reporting is then transmitted all over the world and contributes to informing the public in other countries about conditions in Japan. Foreign correspondents in Tokyo view these press tours as valuable opportunities to visit other parts of Japan and make direct contact with news sources. Press tours also have a positive effect on readers and viewers since the articles are produced by professional journalists from their own countries.
Assistance for individual reporting
- I would like to distribute press releases to foreign journalists in Tokyo to inform them of various events.
The FPCJ offers its own Press Release Distribution Service (by e-mail and fax) to foreign press organizations and foreign embassies in Japan. Users from approximately 190 foreign press organizations and 120 foreign embassies are currently registered for this service. This service is used to distribute press releases at the request of enterprises, organizations, and the central and local governments. It can also be used to announce news presentations and press conferences or other events for the foreign press in Japan.
Foreign Press Center/Japan
Tel: 03-3501-5251 (Strategic Communications Division)
Press Release Distribution Service
- How many foreign media organizations and reporters are working in Japan?
There are currently 408 reporters affiliated with 142 media organizations from 30 countries and regions working in Japan to transmit news from Japan to the world (data gathered by the FPCJ as of January 31, 2020; for list by country/region, click here).
About FPCJ Supporting Membership
- What type of FPCJ activities do Supporting Members assist?
All FPCJ's activities: press briefings by experts and government officials, and press tours covering all over Japan for the foreign media in Japan; fellowship/invitation programs for foreign journalists; and others. For details click the following:
Press Briefing, Press Tours, Fellowship/Invitation Program, Individual Media Assistance
- What privileges do Supporting Members have?
1. Free participation in our symposiums, seminars and get-togethers with foreign journalists
2. Free participation as observers in press conferences and get-togethers sponsored by FPCJ
3. Supporting Members have a space in our office to display and distribute their information materials, etc.
4. Discount use of FPCJ's press-release distribution service meant to the foreign media and embassies in Japan
5. Discount fee for FPCJ conference room
6. Information transmission via the FPCJ website
7. Acceptance of trainees from Supporting Member companies/organizations
- Can the membership fee be used for a tax break?
The annual membership fee qualifies for a tax break as a donation. FPCJ became a public interest incorporated foundation in April 2011. A corporate body that gives a donation to a public interest incorporated foundation is given tax incentives; in addition to the "general deducible expense" that the corporate tax code normally allows, it can be eligible for the "deducible expense concerning a donation to a specified public interest enhancement corporation." For details refer to the "guide to the new tax codes related to public interest incorporated foundations" on the website of the National Tax Agency. (Tax System on Donations, 8 pages)
"guide to the new tax codes related to public interest incorporated foundations"
Guide for Reporting in Japan
- Notes on Scheduling Reporting in Japan
During the periods below it is extremely difficult to arrange appointments with government officials and company representatives.
* The “Golden Week” of consecutive national holidays from the end of April to early May.
* The summer holiday season in August, especially the middle of the month.
* The holiday period at the end of the year and beginning of a new year (late December to early January).
* March (especially mid- to late March), which marks the end of the fiscal year in Japan.
Regarding visas for entry into Japan, media representatives of countries that have reciprocal visa waiver agreements with Japan are not required to obtain visas
(except some countries such as the U.S.:
if they are staying for only a short time for the genuine purpose of reporting. Media representatives from other countries are required to apply for a visa beforehand at a Japanese embassy or consulate general. The FPCJ does not issue letters of invitation for visa applications.
- Interpreters and TV Reporting Coordinators
The FPCJ does not provide interpreting services, but upon request we can supply information on interpreters, coordinators, etc.
* Please replace “at” with “@” when you send the email.
In many cases reporting in Japan necessitates an accompanying interpreter. Therefore, it is necessary to budget for the hiring of an interpreter.
In the case of hiring an interpreter (Japanese–English) through an agency, the rate is approximately:
* 60,000 yen per day (up to eight hours)
* 40,000 yen per half-day (up to four hours).
In order to facilitate TV reporting, it is necessary to hire an interpreter/coordinator who can also handle negotiations with the places to be visited, preliminary meetings, research, general management of the schedule, etc.
In the case of hiring a freelance coordinator, the rate is around:
* 50,000–60,000 yen per day (up to eight hours).
- Bringing Camera Equipment into Japan
In the case of media representatives from member countries of the Customs Convention on the ATA Carnet for the Temporary Admission of Goods, work-related equipment (media and broadcasting equipment, camera equipment) can pass through customs as temporary imports if you submit an ATA carnet when entering Japan. In other cases, it is necessary to follow the required procedures (deposit of guarantee, etc.) at the port of entry, and it may take you several days to get your equipment back.
* The voltage in Japan is 100 V. The television system is NTSC.