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The Prime Minister in Action

Council on Investments for the Future

May 17, 2018

Photograph of the Prime Minister making a statement

Photograph of the Prime Minister making a statement

  • Photograph of the Prime Minister making a statement
  • Photograph of the Prime Minister making a statement

Photograph of the Prime Minister making a statement

Photograph of the Prime Minister making a statement

[Provisional Translation]

On May 17, 2018, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe held the 16th meeting of the Council on Investments for the Future at the Prime Minister’s Office.
At the meeting, there was discussion on human resources development in the age of artificial intelligence (AI), establishment of a next generation healthcare system, and the productivity revolution in the regions (transformation of forestry into a growth industry).

Based on the discussion, the Prime Minister said,

“A transformation of all aspects of our socioeconomic system is essential to create an era of Society 5.0. More than anything else, human resources development is the most important issue. In particular, literacy in information technology (IT) or information processing, such as artificial intelligence and big data, will become the equivalent of reading, writing and arithmetic. With this in mind, it is necessary to fundamentally expand statistics and information education at all levels of schooling from elementary school to university. For university entrance exams as well, informatics needs to be added as a mandatory subject much like Japanese, mathematics and English, to encourage learning of science and mathematics regardless of whether students wish to specialize in liberal arts, humanities and social sciences or math, sciences and engineering. In order to advance reform towards the transition to a new education system fitting Society 5.0, I would like to ask the Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology to give due consideration over detailed reform proposals and swiftly implement them, including creating new degree programs that transcend silos between departments, such as department of science and department of engineering, in addition to the aforementioned points.

Amidst the rapid approach of the year 2025, when all the baby boomers will have reached 75 years of age, technologies of the fourth industrial revolution will play an important role in improving our social security system, including the responses to the issues related to dementia. I ask the Minister of Health, Labour and Welfare to advance initiatives for further advancements from a user perspective, including the next and subsequent revisions of medical fees and other amendments required towards creating an environment where individuals can effectively utilize their medical and nursing data as well as enhancing online healthcare including medication instructions.  

I also believe that our rich forestry resources, a pride of Japan, will become a major trump card for revitalization of local economies, if we increase productivity using cutting-edge technologies such as drones. To this end, it is also necessary to boldly advance the upsizing of forestry. While the Government has submitted a forestry business management bill aimed at creating highly productive forestry management entities in the current session of the Diet, I ask that the Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries work on developing a legal system so that operations can be carried out over the long-term on large lots, in order to encourage consolidating and integrating privately owned forests, incorporating certain areas of national forests.

We will advance efforts so that Japan materializes Society 5.0 ahead of the rest of the world. Under this shared recognition, I ask that the entire Cabinet work together to continue to accelerate reforms in various fields. In this regard, I request the cooperation of each minister.”

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