UK and Japan strengthen digital ties

The UK and Japan will seek to strengthen their business ties by aligning digital regulations in a new partnership. 

Initiatives being explored in the partnership include improving semiconductor supply chains, joint research and development schemes, and standardising security for the ‘internet of things’ that is involved in systems such as smart home technology. 

A digital council between the two countries will meet annually to discuss collaboration amongst British and Japanese companies in the tech industry. The council will be made up of members of the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) in the UK and the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications in Japan. 

DCMS Secretary Michelle Donelan said: ‘The UK’s relationship with Japan has grown from strength to strength in recent years based on a foundation of shared goals and values. 

‘Our thriving tech sectors are another opportunity for us to work together to benefit citizens and businesses across both countries. I look forward to deepening our relationship through the UK-Japan Digital Partnership in the future.’

The combined IT sectors of the UK and Japan are reportedly worth over £406 billion. 

This news come after a joint announcement on digital collaboration in May of this year, and after the two nations signed a ‘memorandum of cooperation’ in October that sought to strengthen ties on digital government transformation. 

At the time, the Minister for the Cabinet Office and Paymaster General, Jeremy Quin, said: ‘The UK and Japan are two of the largest, most advanced economies in the world, with thriving tech sectors and clear ambitions to become world leaders in digital. 

‘By sharing expertise in areas like digital government transformation, we look to support each other in delivering better services and unlocking greater opportunities for our citizens and businesses.’ 

Partnership with Japan is yet another step in the government’s plans to deepen international ties in the tech sector following the release of its ‘Digital Strategy’ in June which sought to install the UK as a global leader in the industry. 

Becoming a leader in technological innovation was the focus of Edinburgh’s recent launch of a new integrated operations centre as part of the Scotland plan to create a ‘smart city’.

Photo: Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport


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