On April 17th, Keidanren announced a proposal titled "Aiming to Build ‘Japan as an Innovation-Oriented Nation’." This proposal represents Keidanren's view on "The Strategy for Rebirth of Japan," which the government plans to compile in the middle of this year.
To produce innovation which should propel Japan's economic growth, Keidanren proposes that Japan should aim at building an "Innovation-Oriented Nation" which will create non-traditional values by vigorously promoting a comprehensive innovation policy as a national strategy which consists of policies in science and technology, ICT, intellectual property and other fields.
The proposal has three pillars: (1) "expansion of ‘investment’ for the future," (2) "development of a ‘foundation’ for creating the future" and (3) "development of ‘human resources’ capable of leading the future," as well as proposing fifty concrete policies and twenty-two specific projects.
Regarding the "expansion of ‘investment’ for the future," Keidanren calls again for achieving a budgetary target of "the government's R&D investment: 1% of GDP, about 25 trillion yen," which was set forth in the 4th Science and Technology Basic Plan. Keidanren also calls for measures, including prioritized investment in pre-competitive research programs with a clear objective to produce innovation, establishment of a successor program to the "Funding Program for World-Leading Innovative R&D on Science and Technology" and realization of an expanded and permanent R&D tax incentive system.
Regarding the "development of a ‘foundation’ for creating the future," Keidanren refers to the promotion of strategic regulatory reforms to create new markets in various fields, such as environment & energy, medical care and agriculture (i.e. regulatory reforms for the promotion of Keidanren's Future City Model Project).
Regarding the "development of ‘human resources’ capable of leading the future," Keidanren points out such topics as creating a system to expand subsidies allocated to highly-evaluated universities and graduate schools in terms of education.
Lastly, to promote innovation, Keidanren insists that it is essential for industry, academia and government to collaborate in steadily playing their respective roles to "concertedly produce" innovation, and requests that the government carry out specific policies with a strong political will and leadership.