Asia experience – 【Singapore】The most famous food Chicken Rice

 Singapore’s best dishes include chicken rice, chili crab, laksa and satay. Chicken rice is one of the popular set meals. Chicken and rice are together. That rice is cooked in broth, but that soup is made from boiled chicken.  Among the many shops, Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice is famous. When I was stationed in Singapore, there was this restaurant just a short walk away, so I went to eat there many times. Whenever I went, customers were queuing up. Many years ago, when my family came to Singapore from Japan, I took them to Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice. I remember my children happily eating it, saying, “It’s delicious!” (Image: Tian Tian Hainanese Chicken Rice)

Asia experience – 【Thailand】Mango sticky rice is a popular dessert in Thailand !

 It was more than 20 years ago, but it was when I went on a business trip to Thailand. I went to a Thai restaurant with a Thai customer.  I thoroughly enjoyed Tom Yum Kung (a famous spicy and sour Thai soup dish with shrimp) and Green Curry (a curry based on green chilies and coconut milk). And the mango sticky rice was served at the end of the meal.  I have never eaten or seen anything like this before, fresh mango, sticky rice and coconut milk on a plate. The mango sticky rice I tried for the first time didn’t taste very good. However, after eating it a few times, I got used to the sweetness of mango and the sweetness of coconut milk. Eating it with sticky rice makes for an exquisite taste. Sticky rice is very sweet and delicious like Japanese Ohagi. Mango sticky rice is now one of my favorite Thai foods. I discovered that even if I didn’t like the taste of the food at first, I could come to like it after eating it over and over again. (Image: Thai mango sticky rice)

Asia experience – 【Korea】Unforgettable Hosu-Samgyetang taste

 In my previous company, I was stationed at a local subsidiary in South Korea. Samgyetang is one of the representative Korean dishes. Samgyetang is a dish of chicken stuffed with ginseng and glutinous rice. I like samgyetang, but I have never tried samgyetang, which is said to be particularly delicious.  One day, I went to a popular restaurant, Hosu-Samgyetang, with an employee of the local subsidiary. There is no menu other than samgyetang because it is a specialty store. Ordering is easy, just tell the staff how many people you want. The samgyetang soup that I usually imagine is transparent or slightly whitish. The samgyetang brought to the table was a thick, rich, pure white soup. I still remember the first bite of well-cooked tender chicken with a little salt and this soup. It was the only flavor that you can’t find in any other samgyetang restaurants. After that, I tried other samgyetang, but Hosu-Samgyetang is still number one in my opinion. (Image: Korean food)

Asia experience – 【Taiwan】Pearl milk tea and soup dumpling of Din Tai Fung

 It is said that Din Tai Fung of Taiwan first entered the Japan in 1996.  There are now more Japan chain restaurants than there are in Taiwan. In addition, it seems that Pearl milk tea invented in Taiwan landed in Japan in the late 1990s.  Actually, when I went on a business trip to Taiwan in the mid-1990s, I enjoyed soup dumpling of Din Tai Fung and pearl milk tea. We went to Din Tai Fung for lunch and tasted soup dumpling. I had soup dumpling full of gravy on a small plate with soy sauce, vinegar and ginger. The soup dumpling I ate for the first time was very delicious and exciting. After finishing lunch at Din Tai Fung, we went to the small stand next door and ordered pearl milk tea. This was also the first time I had drunk it. Milk tea alone is delicious, but when it contains tapioca pearls, its texture can’t be said anything, and I immediately became a fan.  I even wanted to sell pearl milk tea in Japan. (Image: Pearl milk tea and Soup dumpling)

Asia business experience – 【Singapore】Excellent human resources who support the development of the country

In my previous job, I stayed for about 6 years to manage a local subsidiary in Singapore. What I found wonderful about Singapore is that its national policies are clear and its politicians and bureaucrats are excellent. Singapore is a small country with a small land area and a population of about 5.7 million. If the national strategy is inferior, the prosperity of the country cannot be expected. The Singapore government reclaims coastal areas to expand the country, but imports the sediment from overseas. They also import water from Malaysia to ensure a water source. The Singapore government also invite talented human resources from overseas for economic development. The Singapore government is also active in developing human resources. They provide elite education to talented people and train them to become bureaucrats who lead the nation and lead Singapore’s industry. Also, not many people may know that the salaries of politicians and bureaucrats in Singapore are orders of magnitude higher. A system that works for the country and guarantees a life of more than enough seems to help create a competent government. (Image: Singapore)

Asia business experience – 【Hong Kong】The world’s most difficult airport to land at

 I visited Hong Kong for the first time in 1993. The current Hong Kong International Airport is located in Hong Kong New Territories Islands District, but the former international airport at that time was in Kowloon, close to the center of Hong Kong. The airport grounds are narrow and there are mountains nearby. Since the plane could not go straight ahead and land, the route was to make a large turn in a certain place and fly over the height of the buildings. At that time, I thought that the aircraft would crash into a building at any moment. As I later learned, it was called ‘the most difficult airport in the world’ to land at.  The purpose of the trip was to attend IT-related seminars and have meetings with distributors. I walked around the city in between business, but there were many buildings and people in the city, and it was very lively. Also, when conversing in English, I remember that the other party spoke quickly and it was difficult to keep up with the conversation. (Image: Food-related exhibition, Hong Kong)

Asia business experience – 【Malaysia】 The only country in Southeast Asia with domestic automobile manufacturers

 Malaysia is a popular country for long-term stays and migrations. I first visited Malaysia in the 1990s, but I felt that prices were cheap, the food was delicious, and the city was safe. Malaysians are multiracial, mainly Malay, Chinese and Indian. They also have different cultural backgrounds. One of the reasons why Malaysia is so popular may be because it embraces diversity.  As you may know, Malaysia is the only country in Southeast Asia where there are domestic automobile manufactures. There are two companies, Proton and Perodua. I had the opportunity to visit an automobile manufacturer for a business meeting. It made me think about what it takes to survive and grow in the competitive automotive industry. (Image: Automobile company in Malaysia)

Asia business experience – 【Myanmar】A country that feels nostalgic

 I first visited Myanmar in 2015. I have had many business trips to Asian countries, but I have never had a business trip to Myanmar until then. Around 2015, economic sanctions were lifted, efforts for economic development began, and democratization was promoted.  I stayed in the center of Yangon, but the number of Japanese restaurants was gradually increasing. I was able to hear from a person who publishes a newspaper for Japanese people locally. He said he wanted to spend the rest of his life in Myanmar. When I asked him why, he said that he did not feel uncomfortable with Myanmar and rather felt nostalgic. It is true that there are many temples and 90% of them are Buddhist, so I think it gives a sense of familiarity. The city was full of energy and people were busy, but I realized that it was a calming country. (Image: Yangon, Myanmar)

Asia business experience – 【Philippines】Manila Airport now and then

 I first visited the Philippines in the mid-1990s. I had a very unique experience at Manila Airport. That was when I used the toilet at the airport. When I stood in front of the wash basin, the toilet cleaner next to me twisted the faucet and let out water. And when I finished washing my hands, he gave me a tissue towel. It was my first time to receive such a service at the airport and I was impressed that it was a wonderful country. But when I was about to leave, the toilet cleaner reached out and asked for a tip. I couldn’t believe this was happening at the airport.    And something even more surprising happened. When I passed through customs and left the lobby, there was a person selling photos. It was a picture of me. It was a photo taken on the way to the immigration procedure when the plane arrived at Manila Airport. By the time I leave the airport, the photos are developed and sold.    At that time, such things may have been tolerated, but now the economy has grown and the standards of international airports have risen, and no such scene can be […]

Asia Business Experience –【Indonesia】The terrorist bombing incident in Bali shocked me.

 It was about 20 years ago. At the time, I was working for computer peripheral manufacturer and was responsible for sales and marketing in the Asia Pacific region. The development of distributors for computer peripherals has progressed steadily in each country, and the number has exceeded 20. Around this time, we invited all distributors to hold a distributor meeting once every two years.  We planned a 2002 distributor meeting in Bali, Indonesia from Oct. 21st to 25th. In line with this, we had almost completed preparations 10 days before the date of the event, such as adjusting flights for participants from each country, booking accommodation and meals, and preparing presentation materials for the event. All that was left was to make the final adjustments and board the airplane. The terrorist bombing incident occurred on October 12 in Bali. The damage was enormous and shocked all over the world, and the distributor meeting was canceled. If there was a terrorist bomb attack during the distributor meeting, it would have been disastrous.  We also prayed for the souls of the victims of the terrorist bombing. (Image: 45th anniversary event of Indonesia distributor)