The Kokusai Kaikan business centre is in the central business district of Kobe, one of the core cities in the Kansai economic block, which maintains Japan's second largest economy. The 73,000 businesses located within the city are clear evidence of Kobe's economic status. There is a high concentration of foreign-affiliated companies with major clusters in the wholesale, service and manufacturing industries. Kobe port is the busiest container port in the region and the fourth busiest in Japan, surpassing even Osaka, as well as being a centre for manufacturing. Japanese companies headquartered in Kobe include a shoe manufacturer; a department store chain; shipbuilders and heavy engineering companies; and food and confectionery manufacturers. Over 100 international corporations have their regional headquarters in Kobe. A number of research institutes with specialisms from medical imaging and disaster prevention to communications technology also work here, as do some international intergovernmental agencies.
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