Page last updated at 14:08 GMT, Thursday, 19 March 2009

Factories hit by Japan export slump

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Japan is suffering from a collapse in exports that has left the economy reeling.

The country has relied on exports heavily since pulling itself out of the "lost decade" of the 1990s. The impact of the decline is felt deeply in the communities of Ora ward, in Tokyo, where small, family-owned factories make parts for everyday appliances that people use around the world.

As orders disappear for everything from medical machinery to vaccuum cleaners, these companies are being wiped out and the families are suffering from the downturn. The BBC's Matt Frei visited one of these small factories.

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