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Authorization of a Plan for Utilizing Higher-power Electric-motor-assisted Bicycles with Delivery Carts to Drive on Public Roads for Distribution Business-An effort for making use of the System of Special Arrangements for Corporate Field Tests under the Industrial Competitiveness Enhancement Act-

On September 18, 2014, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) approved a plan for new business activities based on a request jointly submitted by Yamato Transport Co., Ltd. and Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd. under the Industrial Competitiveness Enhancement Act.

According to the plan, both companies will launch a new business in which they will utilize higher-power electric-motor-assisted bicycles with delivery carts, as a new distribution and delivery business model, in their distribution and delivery businesses.

The new business is expected to stimulate future demand for such power-assisted bicycles for the distribution and delivery business sector, leading to invigorating the bicycle industry, as well as promoting employment by reducing the burden on female and elderly staff working in the sector, and realizing a low-carbon society through the reduction of CO2 emissions, all of which will contribute to enhancing Japan’s industrial competitiveness.

1. Outline of the System of Special Arrangements for Corporate Field Tests

The System of Special Arrangements for Corporate Field Tests under the Industrial Competitiveness Enhancement Act is a special treatment which is applied to individual companies. Under the system, a private company is eligible to require the Japanese government to develop special treatment which is necessary for launching of new business. In response, a competent minister for the business and a competent minister for regulation will examine and discuss the request to determine whether or not the request is approved.

2. New special arrangements and the approval of an action plan for the new business

With today’s conventional power-assisted bicycles, the current Ordinance for Enforcement of the Road Traffic Act defines motorized bicycles as those with a pedal-assist apparatus having a large assistance force of up twice the foot pressure on the pedal.

On January 27, 2014, private companies submitted a request to the government to develop a special treatment measure, under Article 8 (1) of the Industrial Competitiveness Enhancement Act.

In response, METI and the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT), ministries in charge of the business, and the National Public Safety Commission, an agency in charge of the regulation, examined and discussed the request, and on April 24, 2014, they decided that the government will create a new special arrangement related to the regulation, which will allow the company to utilize power-assisted bicycles with delivery carts having a large assistance force of up to triple the foot pressure if the device’s safety is secured and it is used only for distribution and delivery.

Under the system, a private company is eligible to submit a request to the government to approve an action plan for a new business concerning its utilization of a special arrangement related to the regulation. The company is able to enjoy the special arrangement only if the government approves the plan.

3. Outline of the approved action plan

On August 27, 2014, Yamato Transport Co., Ltd. and Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd. jointly submitted a request to the government for approving their action plan for the new business concerning their utilization higher-power electric-motor-assisted bicycles with delivery carts in the distribution and delivery business. In response, the government examined the request under Article 10 (4) of the Industrial Competitiveness Enhancement Act.

As a result, the government determined that the action plan satisfied the requirements for authorization stipulated in the provisions of the Industrial Competitiveness Enhancement Act and approved the plan on September 18, 2014.

According to the approval, the companies that submitted the request will be able to launch new business while making use of a new special arrangement related to the regulation.

Note: For details of the action plan, the Japanese language press release.

4. Implementation period of the action plan

Starting from September 2014 (on the date of approval) Ending on August 2015

5. Profile of Applicants

Name: Yamato Transport Co., Ltd.
Capital: 50 billion yen
Representative: Masaki Yamauchi, President
Head office: 2-16-10, Ginza, Chuo Ward, Tokyo

Name: Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd.
Capital: 85.703 billion yen
Representative: Hiroyuki Yanagi, President
Head Office: 2500 Shingai, Iwata City, Shizuoka Prefecture

For details of the Industrial Competitiveness Enhancement Act and the supportive measures under the Act, visit the following website:
URL: http://www.meti.go.jp/english/policy/economy/industrial_competitiveness_act/index.html

Release Date

September 18, 2014

Division in Charge

Vehicle Office, Manufacturing Industries Bureau

Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry
1-3-1 Kasumigaseki, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 100-8901, Japan Tel: +81-(0)3-3501-1511
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