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    JAPAN CORPORATE BANK ACCOUNT OPENING

    Opening a corporate bank account in Japan is an important step for businesses operating in the country. A corporate bank account allows companies to manage their financial transactions, receive payments from customers, and pay suppliers and employees.

    Having a local bank account also helps to establish a business’s presence in Japan and can be beneficial when it comes to meeting local regulations and compliance requirements.

    The process of opening a corporate bank account in Japan can be complex, as banks typically require a range of documentation and may have specific requirements for foreign-owned businesses. It is important to choose a bank that is well-established and offers services that meet the specific needs of your business.

    Working with Relin Consultants can be helpful in navigating the process of opening a corporate bank account in Japan. Our team can assist with obtaining the necessary documentation, communicating with the bank, and ensuring that all requirements are met. Relin Consultants provides Japan nominee director services. 

    Our team will carefully plan and prepare for the process so our clients’ companies can ensure a smooth and efficient experience when opening a corporate bank account in Japan.

    INTRODUCTION TO JAPAN’S BANKING SECTOR

    The banking sector in Japan is one of the largest and most sophisticated in the world, with a long history of serving the financial needs of businesses and individuals. A few large domestic banks dominate the sector, but also include many regional and niche players that cater to specific market segments.

    Japan’s banking sector is known for its stability and stability, with well-developed regulatory framework that protects consumers and promotes a stable financial system. Banks in Japan offer a wide range of financial products and services, including deposits, loans, credit cards, wealth management, and international banking services.

    The Japanese banking sector has been undergoing significant change in recent years, with a focus on digitalization and innovation. Many banks are investing in new technology and adopting digital platforms to improve customer experience and increase efficiency.

    Despite this modernization, the sector remains highly regulated, with strict rules and controls in place to protect consumers and ensure a stable financial system.

    The banking sector in Japan is mainly governed by the Ministry of Finance Japan and Financial Service Agency (FSA).

    Presently there are approximately 200 banks in Japan.

    The Japanese banking system mainly consists of those domestically licensed banks, foreign banks with Japan branches,  and online banks. Online banks have only emerged in Japan since 2021.

    Some of the long-established banks in Japan include Mitsubishi UFJ Bank (MUFG Bank), Sumitomo Mitsui Bank,  Mizuho Bank, and Resona Bank.

    Online banks presently are mainly Sony Bank, AEON Bank, Lawson Bank, and Rakuten Bank.

    TIMELINE OF CORPORATE BANK ACCOUNT OPENING

    To open a corporate bank account in Japan without travel is approximately 4 weeks.

    HOW TO OPEN A BANK ACCOUNT IN JAPAN?

    Prepare necessary documents: To open a corporate bank account in Japan, you will need to provide a range of documentation, including articles of incorporation, business license, passport copies of company directors, and bank references. It’s essential to gather all necessary documents before beginning the process.

    • Choose a bank: Research different banks and compare their services, fees, and requirements to find the best fit for your business. Consider factors such as location, accessibility, and the range of services offered.
    • Open a corporate account: Contact the bank of your choice and arrange for an appointment to open a corporate account. You will need to provide the necessary documentation and answer questions about your business during the meeting.
    • Establish a relationship with the bank: Once your account is open, it’s important to establish a relationship with your bank by regularly conducting transactions and maintaining a positive balance. This will help to ensure that your account remains in good standing and that you can access all the services and products offered by the bank.
    • Meet regulatory requirements: As a business operating in Japan, it is important to ensure that all banking activities are in compliance with local regulations. This may involve regular reporting or other requirements, and working with local professionals can help to ensure that your business is meeting all necessary regulations.

    TYPES OF BANK’S IN JAPAN

    Japan’s banking sector is diverse and includes a range of different types of banks that serve different market segments. Some of the main types of banks in Japan include:

    Major Commercial Banks: These are the largest and most well-established banks in Japan and include institutions such as Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group, and Mizuho Financial Group. They offer a wide range of financial products and services, including deposit accounts, loans, and wealth management.

    Regional Banks: These banks operate on a smaller scale and are focused on serving specific regions within Japan. They offer a similar range of products and services as the major commercial banks, but may have different operating models and a more regional focus.

    Shinkin Banks: These are cooperative banks that serve small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and are owned by their members. They provide a range of financial products and services, including deposits, loans, and credit services.

    Foreign Banks: There are also a number of foreign banks operating in Japan, including branches of international banks and banks from other countries. They offer a range of financial products and services to local and international clients.

    Online Banks: These are banks that operate primarily through digital channels and do not have physical branches. They offer a range of financial products and services, including deposit accounts and loans, and are growing in popularity due to their convenience and lower fees.

    Each type of bank in Japan has its own strengths and weaknesses, and the best choice will depend on the specific needs and circumstances of your business. It’s important to consider factors such as location, accessibility, fees, and the range of services offered when choosing a bank in Japan. 

    DOCUMENTS REQUIRED FOR OPENING CORPORATE BANK ACCOUNT IN JAPAN

    The documents required to open a bank company in Japan may vary between different banking institutions. However, all the Japanese banking institutions will require the listed document below to open a corporate bank account:

    The chosen bank application form provided by the bank

    • Original Copy of the Company or Branch Registration Certificate
    • Original copies of the Seal Registration Certificate and the Physical Registered Company seal (stamp).
    • Copy of the Company’s Articles of Incorporation
    • Copy of Corporate Number (provided by the Tax Office)
    • Documentation proving the applicant’s identity that represents the opening of the company bank account
    • Supporting documents (optional):
    • Overview, Profile, Brochure of Promoters for the Company or Parent Company
    • A copy of the most recent Parent Company’s Statement of Accounts
    • Lease or another contract about registered office in Japan
    • Copies of notification from Bank of Japan after the company’s incorporation and tax office notifications

    ADVANTAGES OF JAPAN CORPORATE BANK ACCOUNT OPENING

    Access to Business Credit Card Japan Corporate Bank

    Access to Business Credit Card

    With a corporate bank account, you have the option to obtain a business credit card, making it easier to separate personal and business transactions.

    Improved Accounting Operations Japan Corporate Bank

    Improved Accounting Operations

    Having a dedicated corporate bank account streamlines the accounting process, making it easier to track expenses and manage cash flow.

    Increased Credibility

    Increased Credibility

    Having a corporate bank account can improve the credibility of your business among clients and partners, as it shows a level of professionalism and stability.

    Separation of Personal and Business Finances Japan Corporate Bank

    Separation of Personal and Business Finances

    A corporate bank account separates your personal and business finances, helping to protect your personal assets in case of any legal issues or business debts.

    Efficient Payment Processing Japan Corporate Bank

    Efficient Payment Processing

    Corporate bank accounts offer efficient payment processing solutions for both outgoing and incoming payments, reducing the chance of errors and speeding up the payment process.

    FAQs

    How much does it cost to open a corporate bank account in Japan?

    The cost to open a corporate bank account in Japan may vary depending on the processing fees and other fees set by the chosen banking institution. On average, you may complete the bank account opening with a JPY 1,000 initial deposit.

    What are some of the common reasons for Japanese banks to deny applications for opening a bank account in Japan?

    • The small amount of company capital
    • No registered physical office location
    • Inappropriate or illegitimate business plan and purpose of incorporating
    • The company is funded illegitimately
    • The director, shareholder, or owner of the business company is not reliable or trustworthy.

    What are the procedures to open a Japan Corporate Bank Account?

    STEP 1: Fill in and submit the bank application form

    • Obtain the application form through an online application portal of your chosen bank.
    • Complete the application and submit the form along with its required document to open a bank account in Japan.

    STEP 2: Verification process by the banking institution

    • Wait for the verification process for the application.
    • The banking institution will usually take 2 weeks to review the application.
    • The verification is done to determine whether the application is sufficient and not incomplete.
    • Usually, within the verification process, the bank can decline the application, request incomplete or further documents, and request the company to do an in-visit to the bank.

    STEP 3: Requesting physical visitation to the bank

    • In the case that the bank requires your company to physically present and visit the bank for a meeting. For the visitation, you can send the company’s representative director, ordinary director or employee. Some banks will conduct online interviews. 
    • Most of the time, the meeting will be conducted in Japanese, so you must be fully prepared or even provide a skillful interpreter to ensure a smoother process.
    • The meeting will usually ask about the justification, reason, business activities, and main source of the business income plan for opening a corporate bank account in Japan.

    STEP 4: Wait for approval from the banking institution

    Once the bank is satisfied with the application form, documentation, and the meeting, you will receive approval for the opening of a bank account.

    STEP 5: Deposit the money or capital into the bank

    • You can start depositing the capital or money into the bank after 24 hours of approval.
    • Online banking can also be activated after the successful opening of the corporate bank account.

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