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May 29, 2017

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Japan expected to raise US$4 billion from public offering of railway firm

TOKYO -- The Japanese government expects to raise 416 billion yen (US$4 billion) from the initial public offering of 160 million shares of Kyushu Railway Co., or JR Kyushu, the latest in the privatization of this nation's prized train operations.

The initial price is 2,600 yen (US$24) a share, the company said Monday, the highest in the range initially announced as from 2,400 yen (US$23).

The move is part of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's "Abenomics" revival program. Hopes are high that Japanese people, who tend to save rather than spend, might see the IPO as a safe investment.

Japan's southwestern main island of Kyushu has a bullet train line and other, less successful local trains.

JR Kyushu will list on the Tokyo Exchange on Oct. 25. A day later it will list on the regional Fukuoka exchange.

JR Kyushu, established in 1987, has seen its operations pick up in recent years as tourism from overseas has revived. But it is still suffering from the effects of earthquakes in April.

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