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A. Country Context
Japan is an island nation stretching archwise in northeastern Asia between the North Pacific
and the Sea of Japan. The land consists of 4 main islands and over 6,800 islands with a total
area of approximately 380,000 sq km, which is roughly the size of California. Japan is mountainous
country lying on the circum-Pacific volcanic zone. Mountain ranges with altitude of
2,000-3,000m, which are collectively called the Japan Alps, cross the center of the main island.
The highest point, Mt. Fuji is one of the active volcanoes reaching 3,776m. There are 150 important
volcanoes and crustal movements cause frequent earthquakes. The Population is approximately
127 million with an annual growth rate of 0.11% (â01-â02). The majority resides in
urban areas along the Pacific side. With few flat areas (approx. 24%
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