The U.S. Secretary of the Treasury, Janet Yellen, announced in April 2022 the Biden administration's new approach to navigating a more contentious global economy - they called it "friend-shoring." Ms Yellen also opined, "we cannot allow countries to use their market position in key raw materials, technologies, or products to have the power to disrupt our economy or exercise unwanted geopolitical leverage. Let's build on and deepen economic integration (...)with the countries we know we can count on".
Semiconductors and modern microchips are embedded in everything from mobile phones and washing machines, to smartphones, electric vehicles and cloud data servers. However, the supply of these essential components has been under tremendous strain in recent years, forcing stakeholders to consider shifting their supply chains to value-partner countries. This "friend-shoring" tactic is considered as a way to retain access to international markets while reducing mounting geopolitical risks.
But is "friend-shoring" really a panacea for semiconductor security? After all, even military allies can be fierce economic competitors. Furthermore, to what extent are "friends" true when it comes to semiconductor high-tech? In that regard, the U.S. maintains a dependence on Taiwan - certainly a friend - for high-end microchips. Is friend-shoring the right answer to minimising trade risks? Join us at our July event where, together with representatives from academia, business and parliament, we will toil to shed light on the potential benefits and drawbacks of friend-shoring.
8:00 AM - 8:20 AM
Registration and Networking
8:20 AM - 9:30 AM
Panel discussion and Q&A
The Honorable Masashi Adachi
Chairman of the Committee on the Foreign Affairs and Defence at the House of Councillors; Member of the House of Councillors - the Liberal Democratic Party
Mr Adachi is a Japanese politician who serves as Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs and Defence at the House of Councillors. He graduated from the Faculty of Law at the University of Tokyo in 1983 and earned a LL.M degree at New York University School of Law in 1993. He is currently serving his third term as a Member of the House of Councillors for the Liberal Democratic Party of Japan (LDP).
During his political career he has served as Parliamentary Vice Minister of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism in 2018-2019 under the Abe Cabinet, and as Special Advisor in economy and foreign affairs to Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga in 2020-2021.
Prior to holding elected office, Mr Adachi worked at Sumitomo Corporation in 1983-2000. He also served as Counsel at Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP in 2004-2014. Mr. Adachi is a registered lawyer in the State of New York.
Managing Executive Officer, Corporate Group, Assistant CSO, Energy Innovation Initiative (EII), Sumitomo Corporation; President & CEO, Sumitomo Corporation Global Research Co. Ltd.
Graduated from the University of Tokyo, Faculty of Law in 1985 and joined the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI). Graduated from Georgetown University School of Foreign Service, USA (1993).
Engaged in policy planning and its implementation in a wide range of fields including export control, IT, innovation, intellectual property, intangible assets, environment, energy, corporate taxation, social security, corporate disclosure, commerce, distribution, industrial security, and FTA negotiations. Worked in Belgium from 2009-13 as an industrial researcher for JETRO and as Executive Director for the Japan Machinery Center Brussels Office.
In December 2019 joined Sumitomo Corporation as an advisor. Assigned to the current position from April 2021. Promoted to Managing Executive Officer in April 2023. In sustainability-related matters, served as President of WICI (World Intellectual Capital and Assets Initiative) until 2022 and is currently a member of the IFRS Foundation's IRCC (Integrated Reporting and Connectivity Council).
Research Fellow, Hinrich Foundation; Lecturer, National University of Singapore Business School
Alex Capri is a research fellow at the Hinrich Foundation and a lecturer in the Business School at the National University of Singapore. He also teaches at the NUS Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy.
He is the author of Techno-Nationalism: How it’s reshaping trade, geopolitics, and society (Wiley), due out in 2022.
From 2007-2012, Alex was the Partner and Regional Leader of KPMG’s International Trade & Customs Practice in Asia Pacific, based in Hong Kong. Alex has over 20 years of experience in global value chains, business and international trade – both as an academic and a professional consultant.
He advises governments and businesses on matters involving trade and global value chains. Areas of focus include: IT solutions for traceable supply chains, sanctions, export controls, FTAs and trade optimization.
Alex has been a panelist and workshop leader for the World Economic Forum. He writes a column for Forbes Asia, Nikkei Asia and other publications and is a frequent guest on global television and radio networks.
He holds a MSc from the London School of Economics in International Political Economy and a BSc in International Relations from the University of Southern California.
Director, North Asia of Economist Intelligence Corporate Network
Vivian Tokai is the North Asia Director of the Economist Intelligence Corporate Network based in Tokyo and covering Japan and South Korea. She is responsible for programme development and client engagement. She works closely with c-level executives on key economic and political issues and industry-specific analysis to support their businesses in the region.
Vivian is a government affairs and public policy professional with 25 years of experience covering a wide variety of sectors, including energy, environment, aviation, transportation, defense, IT and digital economy. She has extensive senior leadership experience with a wide range of blue-chip multinational businesses in Japan. Prior to joining the Economist Group, she led Japan government relations activities at UPS, GE, Facebook, eBay and Honeywell. She was responsible for developing and executing strategic lobbying approaches, and ensuring strong relationships with regulators and government leaders.
Vivian has been active in a number of business organisations. She is a member of the Keizai Doyukai, Japan Association of Corporate Executives, and has held various board roles with the American Chamber of Commerce in Japan. She has also been a visiting professor and lecturer at a number of Japanese universities including Chuo University and Showa Women’s University.
Her personal commitment is female empowerment. She served as Chief Diversity Officer at Citigroup in Japan and was selected as Women’s Leadership member at GE.
Vivian also possesses extensive experience in the media. She anchored a sports news segment of a daily evening news program at NHK, the Japan Broadcasting Corporation. She earned a Master of Science degree in Broadcast Journalism from School of Journalism, College of Communication, Boston University. She can speak Japanese and English, and introductory Chinese, Korean and French.