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PHASE 1 In 1868 the fifteen-year old Emperor Meiji as he was posthumously known moved from Kyoto to Edo The move marked the beginning of Japans efforts to modernize its political and social institutions to develop and expand its industrial base and to achieve parity with the Western industrialized nations In 1882 the Ministry of Finance established the Bank of Japan It introduced a modern currency system and put the government on a sound budgetary foundation The Meiji government financed the construction of an industrial infrastructure It began building the national railway network It also financed major heavy industries that were turned over to the private sector later such as mining iron and steel shipbuilding and machine tools Until 1900 light industries such as the textile industry accounted for nearly 85 of Japans total industrial output The textile industry became one of Japans mainstays in industrial output In 1870 textile output was less than 10 By the 1890s it jumped to over 25 The textile industry remained an important source of industrial output in Japan until World War II From 1900 heavy industries such as the iron and steel industry began expanding During World War I 1914-1918 Japan experienced an economic boom With the European Allies engaged in war with Germany European manufacturers were unable to provide the goods to sustain their trade in Asia Japanese firms filled the void by manufacturing and selling the goods to former customers of European firms During the boom years the value of Japanese industries rose threefold and there was a rapid accumulation of capital Industrial output surpassed agricultural output for the first time During the 1920s the productivity of Japanese industries increased as a result of technological improvements greater efficiency in production and the introduction of new employment practices designed to win employee loyalty Japanese in greater numbers had moved into urban industrial centers to work By 1920 180
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