2022 New Year Message from the Representative Director
On behalf of the Japan Association of New Economy, please allow me to extend to you our best wishes for the New Year.
Last year, thanks to the efforts of both national and local government officials and staff, the COVID-19 vaccination efforts in Japan made considerable progress. I would also like to express heartfelt gratitude for the invaluable contributions of all the medical and nursing care staff who have continued to work tirelessly throughout this pandemic. In addition, with the full cooperation and participation of our member companies, JANE has made progress in promoting workplace COVID-19 vaccinations and other measures, contributing to the prevention of the spread of infection and the resumption of economic activities. I would like to express my appreciation of our member companies for their ongoing support and of all the government officials and staff involved for their strong support as well. Recently, newly reported cases of people contracting the Omicron variant have been spreading through the world, further contributing to the unpredictability of the situation ahead. As we continue into 2022, JANE will provide updates on COVID-19 such as the workplace vaccination initiatives of our member companies.
New industries, in particular digital-centric industries, are increasingly taking leading roles in the economy. The Digital Agency has just been established last year and we saw the emergence of the “Ad Hoc Commission on Digital Administrative Reform,” on regulatory reform, as well as the “Grand Vision of a Digital Garden City State,” on regional revitalization. Clearly, digitalization has become a central topic of discussion in these and many other political areas. I am participating in the “Digital Society Design Council” expert panel, established under the Digital Agency, and recently made a presentation entitled “Innovate Japan by Digital”, focusing on the importance of immigration policy to hire and retain digital talent and the elimination of principles held over from the analog era.
At the “Ad Hoc Commission on Digital Administrative Reform” launched last year, a series of “Digital Principles” were established which will serve as the basis for all digital reform, regulatory reform, and administrative reform going forward. This brought us one step closer to the thorough enforcement of the principle of “digital completeness,” which JANE has long advocated. To be clear, what we have been advocating is “thoroughness.” JANE will continue to pay close attention to whether the “Digital Principles” are being thoroughly enforced in all reforms under the Ad Hoc Commission on Digital Administrative Reform.
On the other hand, the government is currently discussing the tightening of various regulations in a variety of fields, including fintech-related and consumer policy-related domains. As an economic organization, we must keep a close eye on whether such momentum will turn the tides and signal a reversion to the analog or an irrational tightening of regulations.
Japan must also focus more on global policy issues such as carbon neutrality and clean energy. In addition to these, JANE has historically promoted diversity and inclusion. We will continue striving to shape a diverse society in which all people can make the most of their abilities, and are free to work while being true to themselves, regardless of differences in race, belief, gender, social status, or family origin.
This summer, the upper house election will be held. We will continue lobbying proactively so that we can influence the manifesto of each political party. There are a number of proposals we would like to make, regarding such topics as fundamental tax reductions and tax reforms, a “zero cash policy” which aims for a completely cashless society, and the abolition of regulations that hinder digitalization. We will proactively make policy proposals related to regulatory reforms in anticipation of medium- and long-term issues facing the Japanese economy.
This year, JANE celebrates its 10th anniversary. JANE was reorganized from its predecessor, the Japan e-business Association , in June 2012, and has moved rapidly but surely through an era of accelerating change. JANE will continue to be a flag-bearer for “Innovation”, “Entrepreneurship” and “Globalization,” and our work will never be complete. With the participation of the young entrepreneurs who will lead JANE in the coming years, we will always work to promote progress with a vision for the future. In this special year of our 10th anniversary, JANE will mark the occasion with a new concept, “Japan Transformation,” which recognizes the fundamental transformation of Japan through the power of entrepreneurs. In June, we plan to publish an anniversary book and hold a spectacular 10th anniversary event. To be held on June 1, this event must signal the new beginning of the decade to come, not simply summarize the last decade. We are working hard to ensure that this event becomes a meaningful moment that will unite people and remind them of JANE’s significance.
In order for Japan’s economy to compete on the world stage, JANE’s role becomes more expansive with each passing day. We are committed to starting 2022 at speed, as this year marks the beginning of a new decade for JANE. We very much look forward to your support and cooperation in the year ahead.
January 1, 2022
Japan Association of New Economy (JANE)
Hiroshi Mikitani, Representative Director