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Exclusive: Japan ministry eyes digital platform to nurture IT experts

  • August 18, 2021
  • , Jiji Press , 1:26 p.m.
  • English Press

Tokyo, Aug. 18 (Jiji Press)–Japan’s industry ministry is considering developing a new digital platform to nurture information technology experts in response to a lack of such technicians in the nation, informed sources have told Jiji Press.

A special website will be launched to provide company employees and others with online recurrent education programs on IT, according to the sources.

The ministry will seek necessary funds under the government’s fiscal 2022 budget. It aims to launch the new platform in the year starting next April after hammering out details at a working group to be launched shortly.

Japan is facing a serious shortage of IT experts at a time when new technologies, such as artificial intelligence, are becoming increasingly important in line with progress in digitalization of society.

According to a survey report released by the ministry in 2019, the shortage of IT personnel in Japan would likely reach 450,000 by 2030.

The 2021 telecommunications and information white paper, published by the Internal Affairs and Communications Ministry late last month, cited a lack of IT experts as the main reason for a delay in Japanese companies’ digital transformation compared with foreign peers.

IT-related firms and public institutions will offer online programs for the planned new digital platform, allowing corporate employees to study AI and other new technologies and helping students and others learn basic IT skills, the sources said.

Users of the platform will also be able to join programs aimed at supporting local small companies and municipalities that are struggling to secure IT experts.

The industry ministry will also consider showing skills acquired by users of the platform so that companies can examine them for their recruiting activities, according to the sources.

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