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【METI Mobile】 Growing Japan into a Sports MVP

Picture of a baseball game demonstration seen through AR glass "Sony SmartEyeglass"
(Photo provided by Sony Corporation)

As the start of the Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games gets the world cheering for sports, Japan looks to Tokyo 2020 and beyond as it aims to triple size of its sports business sector to 15 trillion yen by 2025. Recognizing the need for new strategies, Japan is exploring policies to unlock the true growth potential of the Japanese sports industry and drive greater profits.

Sports, the next growth industry?

In the coming years, Japan will host several large-scale international sports events, including the Rugby World Cup 2019 and 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games. These events offer an opportunity for Japan to ignite the potential economic power of the sports industry to drive economic growth. By assessing the economic value of sports beyond traditional collaboration with gaming, fitness and education to sectors including tourism, healthcare and other industries, an expanded sports market has the potential to make a far-reaching impact on the Japanese economy.

Homerun for regional economies

The sports sector is now making efforts to integrate with the healthcare, cuisine, tourism and fashion industries?creating tremendous opportunity for regional economies. Encouraging out-of-town marathon participants to enjoy local cuisines and attractions is one way of bringing in new business. Another breakthrough could come from leveraging the 125 professional sports teams across Japan as regional economic resources. Sports tourism offers an exciting new way to reinvigorate regional economies while drawing even more overseas visitors to Japan.

Game-changing technology

The sports sector is transitioning from a goods-based industry to an experience-based industry. Now fans are starting to be able to enjoy watching games through virtual reality (VR) and sensory technologies at home, or through more advanced services at stadiums. These services are making sports more accessible and enjoyable than ever before.

Through these methods, Japan aims to begin an independent virtuous cycle in the sports sector, reinvesting profits to reach its goal of tripling the market to 15 trillion yen by 2025.

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Last updated: 2016-08-05
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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