TOKYO (Kyodo) -- The government is planning to propose in a white paper that Japanese manufacturers seek growth by stepping up efforts to develop low-priced products targeting mainly middle-income consumers in emerging economies, a copy of a draft of the report showed Wednesday.
According to the draft of the 2009 white paper for manufacturers, the development of low-priced products such as home appliances with simple functions can boost demand in emerging countries.
The draft says the number of consumers with annual disposable incomes of $5,000 or higher in four key emerging economies --Brazil, China, India and Russia -- grew to 630 million in 2007 from 250 million in 2002.
The draft report also calls for cooperation between the government and the private sector so that Japan can take the lead in areas such as next-generation automobiles, photovoltaic power generation and robots.
The 2009 white paper for manufacturers is expected to be approved by the Cabinet in May.