February 4, 2021
The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) inaugurates a study group on the “digital industry,” comprised of companies making progress in digital transformations (DX), to discuss the way and policy towards creating such industry.
The study group will clarify the specific image of “digital industry,” where companies are mutually connected and achieve growth by providing new value to society while coping with changes in the global competitive environment, and will show the direction for both user and vendor companies promoting DX to transform business. It will also consider the policies to be adopted for encouraging the transformation of companies, including local communities and SMEs.
1. Purpose and Background
METI established the Study Group for Acceleration of Digital Transformation in August 2020, which held discussions on measures to accelerate DX among companies in Japan in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, and compiled “DX Report 2 (Interim Report )” in December 2020.
DX Report 2 shows a digital society to be achieved, where social issues are resolved and new values and experiences are shared in a prompt manner to realize a safe and secure society, and where highly competitive companies developing business globally and new industries contributing to the sustainable growth of the world are generated through digital utilization.
It is considered that in such a digital society, companies will become able to create new value, mainly through internal manufacturing and agile development with the advancement of DX, and the industry will be transformed in the direction of reducing the difference between user and vendor companies (realization of digital industry).
On the other hand, in a transition stage, the existence of “companies supporting DX,” who accelerates such transformation, will be essential. It is strongly expected that vendor companies employing many IT engineers assuming the role of such “companies supporting DX” will depart from the existing business and quickly transform themselves into companies that actively support the DX of the entire society. Further, also regarding user companies, it is possible that they will develop services based on digital technology in addition to their existing business, and to assume the position of supporting the DX of other companies.
The study group considers the necessity for the current user/vendor companies to develop into “companies supporting DX,” and the direction of policies to encourage such movement, in the current situation where the importance of digital transformation is increasing for the entire society, including measures against the COVID-19 pandemic or initiatives to realize a carbon-neutral society by 2050.
2. Outline of the organization and procedure
Study group: In addition to academic experts, user companies, and vendor companies, experts from companies engaged in cutting-edge business as digital companies will join the discussion.
Working group: Experts and industry groups including companies adapting to digital industrial transformation will consider individual and practical points of argument to summarize challenges and proposals toward the realization of digital industry.
The first meeting of the study group will be held on February 4, with further meetings planned thereafter. Although the discussion of the study group will be closed to the public in order to ensure frank and free exchange of opinions among companies and members, the progress of the discussion will be published in due course.
Division in Charge
- Software and Information Service Industry Strategy Office, IT Industry Division, Commerce and Information Policy Bureau
- IT Innovation Division, Commerce and Information Policy Bureau