Improvements in the employment and income environment continue to drive a gradual recovery in the Japanese economy. Keidanren is seizing this opportunity to press ahead with policy recommendations aimed at ending deflation and revitalizing the economy in the aim of harnessing innovation and globalization to create a more affluent and vibrant Japan.
The first focus of our efforts is to strengthen the growth strategy centered on Society 5.0. The trend towards digitization, which includes IoT, AI, big data, and robots, has begun to bring revolutionary change—a paradigm shift—to many industries. To strengthen the Japanese economy in such times, the public and private sectors need to cooperate in taking bold steps while keeping an eye on dramatic changes in industrial structure.
While delivering economic growth through the use of innovative technology, Society 5.0 aims to resolve increasingly complex social issues and pave the way to achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). We are creating a road map toward a fully functioning Society 5.0, which we aim to share internationally.
At the same time, we are promoting energy and environmental measures compatible with economic growth, creating a business environment in which a diverse workforce can actively participate, and breathing new life into dynamic regional economies.
Our second focus is structural reform. We must upgrade economic and social platforms to make them appropriate for Society 5.0. We are squarely addressing reforms to update regulations, revise taxation, and amend social security systems to dispel people's concerns about the future, as well as fiscal consolidation.
Keidanren's third focus is engagement in multifaceted private-sector economic diplomacy and enhancement of our capabilities as a global influencer. We have consistently promoted free trade. By urging an international rule-based response to protectionist trends, from the perspective of the business community we will continue to make a positive contribution to maintaining and reinforcing free and open international economic order that is based on rules.
While maintaining and strengthening ties with a range of stakeholders, Keidanren will resolutely address critical policy issues contributing to the stable and sustained development of the domestic and global economies. We appreciate your continued support.
(Executive Chairman, Hitachi, Ltd.)