Japan Enacts Bill to Launch Digital Agency

Politics

Tokyo, May 12 (Jiji Press)--The Diet, Japan's parliament, on Wednesday enacted a package of digital transformation bills including one to establish a digital agency advocated by Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga.

The package of six bills cleared the House of Councillors, the upper chamber of the Diet, at the day's plenary meeting, with support from ruling party members and some other lawmakers. The legislation passed the House of Representatives, the lower chamber, last month.

The enactment marked a "big step forward on the long-standing issue of digitalization in our country," Suga told reporters later on Wednesday. "We aim to create a society where everyone can benefit from digitalization," he said.

The government will now start in earnest preparations to launch the new agency on Sept. 1. While the prime minister will head the agency, the government plans to appoint a private-sector figure familiar with related technologies to the agency's top bureaucratic post.

The new agency is expected to initially have a staff of about 500, including more than 100 people from the private sector. The government has already recruited about 30 private-sector engineers and others.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press