The history of ABIC is summarized as follows:
April 2000: Japan Foreign Trade Council, Inc. (JFTC) organized an NPO as one of its internal departments
under the name of “Action for a Better International Community” (ABIC).
May 2001: ABIC was granted corporate status, becoming an NPO corporation.
July 2002: ABIC obtained a license as a fee-charging employment agency.
In the articles of incorporation, ABIC’s mission is stated as follows:
With abundant human resources well versed in international businesses, ABIC aims to make social contributions domestically and internationally, while providing physical support to government agencies, local municipalities, private enterprises, educational organizations and others.
Chairman: Eizo Kobayashi, Chairman of JFTC and Chairman of Itochu Corporation
President: Hidehisa Saito, Managing Director of JFTC
Managing Director and Secretary-General: Toshiyuki Yamaguchi, General Manager of JFTC
ABIC memberships are divided into the following three categories:
Regular members consist of seventeen corporations and eleven individuals. They have the voting right at the general assembly to decide basic policies for ABIC’s activities. Included in the above corporations are Chori Co., Ltd., Hanwa Co., Ltd., Hitachi High-Technologies Corp., Inabata & Co., Ltd., Itochu Corp., Iwatani Corp., JFE Shoji Holdings, Inc., Kanematsu Corp., Kowa Company, Marubeni Corp., Mitsubishi Corp., Mitsui & Co., Ltd., Nagase & Co., Ltd., Sojitz Corp., Sumitomo Corp., Toyota Tsusho Corp. and JFTC.
Associate members are individuals and corporations who agree with ABIC’s goals and pay the membership fee to support its activities. About 400 individuals are enrolled and the number of members is steadily increasing.
Registered members are individuals who have registered with ABIC to participate in activities of some kind or another. Most of them are older employees retired from sogo shosha, general trading companies. The following shows some of their aspects.
- Total number of registered members: About 2,700
- Those who have experience being stationed overseas: About 2,280 (about 85%)
- Those who can speak English: About 2,340 (about 90%)
- Those who can speak a foreign language(s) besides English: About 1,250 (about 46%)