April 5, 2013


'Giving Japan 2012' Reviews Philanthropy Market in Japan

Keywords: Civil Society / Local Issues Money NGO / Citizen 

The Japan Fund Raising Association (JFRA), a nonprofit organization, published in December 2012 "Giving Japan 2012," a philanthropy whitepaper, through Keidanren Publishing. This is the third issue of "Giving Japan" since it was first published in 2010 to provide an overview of the philanthropy market in Japan. The latest issue covers donations and volunteer activities for restoration and reconstruction of areas affected by the Great East Earthquake and tsunami that struck Japan on March 11, 2011.

According to the report, contributions associated with the Great East Japan Earthquake made by individuals and corporations across Japan totaled 600 billion yen (US$ 6,740 million) by the end of 2011. Nationwide, 85.12 million people--roughly 77% of the Japanese population aged 15 years or older in 2011--made a donation in some form; 29.4% of donations in 2011 were in the form of money.

The report also estimates a total amount of donated money in Japan in 2010 of 1.1831 trillion yen (US$13.29 billion), excluding earthquake-related donations. This is equivalent to 0.25% of Japan's nominal Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in the same year--relatively low compared to other developed countries (1,98% of GDP in the United States, 1.0% in the United Kingdom, 0.73% in the Netherlands).

Masataka Uo, head of JFRA board, says the organization wants to foster a culture of giving in Japan by educating people about how tax deduction works under the new donation tax reform introduced in June 2011, and by promoting other new schemes, such as the utilization of dormant deposits, deposits that have been inactive for a long period of time, and testamentary giving, which is the donation of one's assets in one's will.