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Results of the E-Commerce Market Survey Compiled-The domestic B to C-EC market scale has grown to 11.2 trillion yen-

The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) conducted the FY2013 E-Commerce Market Survey to analyze the current state of the Japanese e-commerce (EC) market, as well as the market scale and the current state of use of cross-border EC among three countries, namely, Japan, the U.S., and China. The results of the survey were compiled and publicized as follows.

1. E-Commerce Market Survey

Since FY1998, the survey has been conducted every year, aiming at looking into the trends of the EC market and the current state of users, and this was the 16th survey.

The FY2013 survey investigated the current states of the domestic market scale of the B to C (business-to-consumer) EC and the B to B (business-to-business) EC, the market scale of the B to C cross-border EC, and the trends of cross-border EC among Japan, the U.S., and China.

1) Survey period
January 2013 to December 2013
2) Survey targets
Japan, the U.S., and China
3) Survey method
Document investigation, interviews with business operators, questionnaires to consumers, etc.

2. Summary of the survey results

1) Scale of the domestic EC market

In 2013, the market scale of the domestic B to C-EC expanded to 11.2 trillion yen (up by 17.4% from the previous year). In addition, the domestic market scale of B to B-EC in a narrow sense*1-1) expanded to 186 trillion yen (up by 4.4% from the previous year) and in a wide sense*1-2) expanded to 269 trillion yen (up by 2.8% from the previous year).

As for the EC ratio,*2 the B to C-EC is 3.7% (up by 0.6 % points from the previous year), the B to B-EC in a narrow sense is 17.9% (up by 0.4% points from the previous year), and the B to B-EC in a wide sense is 25.9% (up by 0.2% points from the previous year), showing that EC is on an increasing trend and that the computerization of commercial transactions continues to advance.

Notes:
*1. Domestic e-commerce is defined as follows in this survey:

1) E-commerce in a narrow sense
Transactions that are conducted (purchase orders are issued) via computer network systems using Internet technologies and whose contract amounts are captured also via such systems. “Internet technologies” refers to technologies using the TCP/IP protocol suite, and include the Internet via public lines, extranet, Internet VPN, IP-VPN, etc.
2) E-commerce in a wide sense
Transactions that are conducted (purchase orders are issued) via computer network systems and whose contract amounts are captured also via such systems. E-commerce in a wide sense includes e-commerce in a narrow sense plus conventional EDI not using VAN, dedicated lines, or the TCP/IP protocol suite (such as EDI using the JBA procedures or EIAJ procedures, etc.)

*2. The EC ratio in this survey refers to the ratio of the e-commerce market scale against the total amount of the overall commercial transactions.

2) Market scale of cross-border EC among the three countries, namely, Japan, the U.S., and China

The purchase amount in cross-border EC by Japanese consumers from U.S. and Chinese business operators is 191.5 billion yen, while that by U.S. consumers from Japanese and Chinese business operators is 719.7 billion yen, and that by Chinese consumers from Japanese and U.S. business operators is 807.2 billion yen, showing that Chinese consumers purchased the largest amount in the cross-border EC among those in the three countries.

The estimated scale of cross-border EC among Japan, the U.S., and China as of 2020 is around 4.1 trillion yen at the largest.

3) Current states of consumers’ cross-border EC use among Japan, the U.S., and China

Looking at consumers’ use rates of cross-border EC among Japan, the U.S., and China, the rate in China is 35.4%, higher than those in Japan (10.2%) and the U.S. (24.1%).

In addition, as for the question on whether or not survey respondents intend to use cross-border EC in the future, Chinese consumers responded that they intend to use such EC through all types of terminals, showing that a higher ratio of the Chinese consumers intend to use cross-border EC than those in Japan and the U.S. In particular, more than 70% of the Chinese consumers responded that they intend to use cross-border EC through personal computers, tablet terminals and smartphones.

3. Future actions

Based on the results of the survey, METI will endeavor to develop transaction rules and solve challenges in conducting such transactions so as to address further expansion of the scale of E-commerce market.

Note: For the details of the survey including the full text of the report, see the Japanese language press release.

Release Date

August 26, 2014

Division in Charge

Information Economy Division, Commerce and Information Policy Bureau

Related Information

Information Policy

Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry
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