1. Trends in Passenger Transport
The gross domestic passenger volume in FY1990 was 77.9 billion, an increase of 0.9 % over the previous year. The gross number of passenger-kilometers was I trillion 298.4 billion for the same period, a slight increase of 2.5% over FY1988 and FY1989.
One of the driving forces of the present economic expansion is growth in capital expenditure by private enterprise. The number of passengers traveling increased in line with the a rise in the number of employees. However, the increase was limited, due to a dramatic drop in transport by privately owned vehicles, which accounts for more than half of all passenger transport.
In individual transport sectors, there was favorable expansion in Japan Rail (JR) travel centered on types of non-commuters growth was similarly experienced by private railway companies. Long-distance coach transport and hired coaches experienced continued expansion, however there was a sudden slowdown in growth in privately owned vehicles, and travel by chauffeur driven cars and taxis also continued a downward trend. Air travel continued to expand, but at a slower rate.
In 1990 there was a large increase in the number of Japanese leaving for travel overseas - the 10 million mark was broken, as the figure rose to 10 million 100 thousand. This is a reflection of favorable economic growth affecting individual consumer spending.
However, the Persian Gulf War had an adverse affect on the number of Japanese traveling overseas. As it intensified in February 1991, there was a drop of 323 thousand in people leaving the country - the largest decrease since travel overseas was liberalized in 1954. The number of overseas visitors to Japan increased by 400 thousand to reach an historical level of 3 million 240 thousand in 1989.
The gross domestic cargo transport volume in 1990 was 6 billion 776 million tons, an increase of 4.1% over the previous year. The gross cargo ton - kilometers continued to expand and recorded 546 billion 785 million for the same period, an increase of 6.5%.
This growth was supported by expansion of investment in facilities supported by individual consumption centered on the transport of manufactured materials.
In individual cargo transport sectors, there was favorable expansion particularly centered on railway containers.
Vehicular transport was firm but expansion slowed down.
Maritime transport of construction-related cargo shifted from a high level of growth to favorable expansion. Air cargo transport remained firm but the rate of expansion dropped.
The world economy continued to expand overall in 1990.
However, the pace dropped particularly in developed countries, and the overall rate of expansion dropped. The overall expansion rate in Japan's maritime trade volume (ton base) decreased, while the trend of increased imports and decreased exports continued.(table4)
There has been favorable expansion in the number of passengers using rail transport. On March 19, 1991 the JR Narita Express commenced services and on June 20 the Tohoku - Joetsu Shinkansen link to Tokyo Station was completed. With the exception of private venicular transport, there was favorable overall expansion in passenger and cargo transport.(table5)