About JCIF

FAQs

Japan Center for International Finance (JCIF) is a research institution specializing in international finance, founded in March 1983 through contributions by leading Japanese private financial institutions in cooperation with the Ministry of Finance.



1.Who are we?
Japan Center for International Finance is a public-purpose research institution authorized by the Japanese Government. JCIF was established in 1983 in the aftermath of Latin American Financial Crises, through the initiative of the Japanese financial community which saw merit in making available common independent sovereign risk analysis, conducted by a center jointly financed, rather than resorting to in-house sovereign risk analyses.

Our research work is financially supported, in essence, by annual contributions of JCIF members as well as investment income from JCIF’s initial endowment. In other words, JCIF is financially independent of the Japanese Government, while JCIF is granted favorable tax advantages by the Japanese Government for the center’s public-purpose research.

2. What do we do?
JCIF research covers macro-economic analysis of more than 60 economies, focusing on emerging economies ranging from Asia to Latin America, Middle East and Africa.

We issue our macro-economic reports based on our staff’s research journeys.
Our staff regularly visit countries under their watch and conduct interviews with multiple sources (government agencies, central banks, research institutions, representatives of international financial institutions, etc.) Our staff prepare for each country a country macro risk report (10-15 pages in length) and a basic country survey with 8 sections ranging from history to fiscal situation and investment policies. We produce sovereign risk ratings twice per year for 24 major emerging economies whose minimum bundles of macro data are regularly published.

In addition to our regular macro-economic research, we issue reports covering a wide-range of subjects of interest to our membership, such as real time Euro area policy developments provided by our office in Brussels, weekly chronological updates of events in North Africa and the Middle East following the “Arab Spring” revolution and impact of regulatory as well as fiscal policy developments in the U.S. and other major economies. Our experts also prepare weekly updates on major developments in each region.

Our reports are available online to our membership and registered individuals such as academic researchers. To our great satisfaction, access to our reports has been steadily rising.

JCIF is offering software to cope with measures of international economic sanctions
JCIF is offering financial institutions and other regulated entities based in Japan, compliant with the FATF (Financial Action Task Force) recommendations, Japanese government ordinances and with economic sanctions imposed in accordance with United Nations resolutions, two types of software to counter the financing of global terrorism:

The first one is a real-time screening system that allows financial institutions to check the names of customers who open new deposit accounts or send (overseas) remittances against a list of names under sanction maintained by the Japanese Ministry of Finance. The other is a batch screening system enabling financial institutions to eliminate those on said list from their customer base.

Relying on the latest updates from the Ministry of Finance, JCIF has been able to support a host of financial institutions by providing relevant information as accurately and promptly as possible.

3. What are the unique properties of JCIF’s activities?
The unique aspect of JCIF’s activities owes to its history of establishment authorized by the Japanese Government. Against this background, the predominant part of JCIF’s experts are on secondment from JCIF’s members, mostly financial institutions and the Bank of Japan.

JCIF has maintained good but arm’s-length relations with the Japanese authorities. It is customary for JCIF to host a breakfast meeting, attended by the CEOs of the Japanese financial sector, featuring Japan’s Finance Minister and the Governor of the Bank of Japan as main speakers on the occasion of the annual meetings of the IMF/World Bank as well as the Asian Development Bank. In addition, JCIF organizes a series of seminars inviting high ranking Japanese officials as speakers. When staff visits to emerging countries, the arrangement of meetings is facilitated through the assistance of Japanese embassies in those countries.
Also, JCIF keeps a close working relationship with international financial institutions (IFIs). Some staff pay regular visits to the field offices of the respective IFIs. Following the semi-annual release of the IMF’s World Economic Outlook, it is customary that the Director of IMF’s Office of Asia Pacific makes his/her presentation of the WEO at the JCIF.

4. Who are the users of the JCIF’s research reports?
The reinvigorated overseas engagement of the Japanese business and investment community have been underlined by increasing access to JCIF’s research reports.

Among our membership, the most common users of JCIF’s research are major financial firms (banks, security houses, life and casualty insurance companies), asset management companies, major trading companies, and some major manufactures. JCIF research reports provide those institutions with reference materials for them to form judgment on loan commitment, mutual fund formation, or foreign direct investment commitment.

Also, Japanese government agencies in charge of economic policies as well as the Bank of Japan have been using our research reports extensively, while being quasi members of the JCIF.