Businesses in Japan that violate shutdown orders could face fines

The amendment to the special measures law is set to be enacted by the Japanese government in early February.
By: | January 18, 2021
Topics: Compliance | Covid-19 | Japan | News

Firms in Japan that violate the nation’s orders to shut down as the country is tackling its coronavirus crisis could face fines of up to 500,000 yen (US$4,813), according to a government draft to strengthen a special measures law.

The enforced measures include allowing prefectural governments to issue legally binding orders to companies to halt operations under a declared state of emergency, which differs from the current practice of requesting businesses to close temporarily, reports The Mainichi. 

The amendment to the special measures law is set to be enacted by the Japanese government in early February. The draft will be presented at a government meeting, with an audience of the ruling and opposition parties on February 8, it was reported.

Once the government officially adopts the new measure, businesses that are requested to close and flout such requests without a valid reason can be ordered to shut down for a certain period. If firms do not comply, they can be subject to a fine of up to 300,000 yen (US$ 2,888).

READ: Japan looks to shorten restaurant operating hours through subsidies

However, under the state of emergency, the fine goes up to 500,000 yen (US$4,813). 

There is also a provision for the central government to provide financial assistance to prefectural governments, which will in turn, provide financial support to businesses that have to suspend their operations.