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The Business Opportunity

TopThe Business Opportunity

Energy continues to be a top priority issue for Japan following the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami disaster, with new technologies playing a vital role in discussions. From smart grids, metering, nuclear power alternatives and sensor technologies to the monitoring and collection of energy data, there are real opportunities for British innovation.

Pre-Fukishima, Japan’s energy policy placed a heavy emphasis on nuclear power, with 30% of the country’s electricity generated by nuclear energy. However, in July 2013 Prime Minister Abe made it clear that Japanese energy policy was shifting its focus to renewable energy sources for a safer approach to energy production and to reach their target of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 80% by 2050. With large multinationals such as Goldman Sachs investing $487 million, and the Japanese government themselves investing a tremendous 30 trillion yen, into the country’s renewable energy sector, it is evidently an area of huge growth.

As a consequence of this shift there are clear commercial opportunities for UK technology companies to expand their product or service into Japan, both within the renewable energy sector and the development of smart technology. Japan has become one of the fastest-growing users of solar energy, with wind, tidal, geothermal and biomass energy production increasing in popularity as well. Additionally, with a growing focus on energy conservation and reduced consumption, smart communities are being established throughout Japan. Indeed, a recent study by Japanese academics estimated that the smart community market within Japan is to grow by 338% from 1.4 trillion yen (£8.9 billion) to 3.8 trillion yen (£24.3 billion) – around 7% of the global market.

It is within this context that this trade mission to Japan seeks to introduce the UK’s outstanding technology, services and business models to Japanese industries; in order to secure meaningful partnerships with Japanese businesses, enhancing their capability and accelerating Japan’s drive towards Smart Technology.