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The Current Conditions of Dekasegi from Paraguay (Japanese)

(Japanese) In terms of dekasegi, many Nikkei Paraguayan came to Japan for work. In our colony in Paraguay, the Japanese language education is highly valued. The Nikkei workers from Paraguay can speak Japanese quite fluently and are looked upon in high regard in the Japanese workplace. However, many are married to Paraguayans, who encounter difficulties through language barriers and differences in customs. Because of the economy, there are of course numerous reports to the embassy of cases of lay-offs and people without places to go.

At the embassy, immigrant workers are either recommended to return back to Paraguay, or depending on their Japanese language ability and flexibility with different working positions, advised to try to endure decreased hours and wait for the economy to turn around. In other cases, people who have lived in Japan for a few years, about 5 to 10 years, and have a good amount of savings, are recommended a temporary return to Paraguay to wait for the Japanese economy to recover. Many have followed this advice and returned to Paraguay.


dekasegi foreign workers Nikkei in Japan Paraguay

Date: March 24, 2009

Location: Tokyo, Japan

Interviewer: Alberto Matsumoto

Contributed by: Watase Media Arts Center, Japanese American National Museum

Interviewee Bio

Isao Taoka was born in 1943 in the Miyoshi District of Tokushima Prefecture. At the age of 14, he immigrated to the La Paz Colony in Paraguay. While engaging in agriculture, Mr. Taoka took on several community positions such as the chair of the Cooperativa La Paz Agrícola (Agriculture Union of La Paz), the chairman of the Central Cooperativa Nikkei del Paraguay (Central Nikkei Agriculture Union in Paraguay), and the supervisor as well as the director for the Federación de Cooperativa de Producción del Paraguay (Agriculture Union Federation of Paraguay). In 1987, he received the third class of the Paraguay Merit of Service Award. Between 1992 and 1996, and again from 2002 to 2003, Mr. Taoka served as the mayor of La Paz. In 2004, he became the first immigrant born in Japan to be inaugurated as an ambassador to Japan. Mr. Taoka served this position until October of 2009. (December 2009)

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