In this article, we will look into the process of opening a corporate bank account in Japan. While it goes without saying that having a Japanese bank account can facilitate smooth business transactions for overseas companies launching their operations in Japan, there are often cases where the account opening process does not proceed as smoothly as anticipated.

The key requirement for opening an account is the company’s “Certification of Full Registry Records” (commonly referred to as a “Touhon” in Japanese). Ensuring the proper preparation of this document is absolutely essential.

The primary issue arises when the representative director listed on the Touhon is of non-Japanese nationality. If this individual possesses a valid residency status and an address in Japan, there’s no problem. However, if not, the account opening procedure will be impossible. It’s crucial to note that the address of the representative listed in the Touhon must be a Japanese address.

In essence, the foremost document required for the account opening process is the Touhon, which should have the name of a representative director with a Japanese address.

Therefore, if the address of the representative director is not in Japan, the solution becomes appointing someone with a Japanese address as the representative director.

Concretely, within the company, a resolution (which can be in written form) needs to be made as to “appoint someone with a Japanese address as the new representative director.” This resolution needs to be submitted to the relevant Legal Affairs Bureau along with the meeting minutes, and a notification of the change in the representative director is made. If the company wants to retain the original representative, it becomes a practical approach to appoint someone with a Japanese address as a co-representative.

If the representative director’s address is not in Japan, even if all preparations for bank scrutiny are impeccable, it’s essentially a closed door.

All in all, it is crucial to keeping this in mind, during the process of company establishment, and try to have a representative director with a Japanese address.

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