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Gov’t looking to simplify business startup application procedures by harnessing cloud services

  • May 23, 2017
  • , Sankei , Lead
  • JMH Translation

On May 22, the government endorsed a plan to consolidate application procedures for setting up new businesses. To register a new firm, applicants currently must perform cumbersome procedures that span several government ministries and agencies, and this has been identified as an obstacle to developing entrepreneurs. The government hopes to create an environment conducive to launching venture firms and thereby accelerate the drive to raise Japan’s nominal gross domestic product to 600 trillion yen, a goal set by the Abe administration.


The government envisages using a cloud computing network to create a one-stop application process. Under the plan, applicants enter data, such as the company name, type of business, and representative name, on a site operated by a cloud service provider. Then, the cloud service provider submits the application to the appropriate ministries and agencies online. The application process is handled by the provider, thus eliminating the procedures that applicants currently need to perform with individual ministries and agencies.


It is said that the cumbersome application procedures discourage people from setting up new businesses. The World Bank ranks Japan 89th out of 190 countries and regions in the terms of ease of starting a business. Japan requires entrepreneurs to file eight documents to apply to register a business, whereas New Zealand, which leads the rankings, requires only one document.


Japan has comparatively few entrepreneurs. According to a survey conducted by the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor, Japan has 3.8 entrepreneurs per 100 people, whereas the U.S. and China have over 10 per 100. The government wants to improve these statistics.


The government plans to incorporate the new scheme in the growth strategy blueprint it will finalize by early June. It will begin discussions with the private sector about the technological challenges that need to be resolved and the revisions to law and regulations by summer, with an eye to reaching a conclusion within the current fiscal year. (Abridged)

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