Skip to main content

Japan-EU Digital Partnership Council held

Published on July 3, 2023


On July 3, 2023, the Digital Agency jointly with Ministry for Internal Affairs and Communications (MIC), and Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI), held a Japan-EU Digital Partnership Council at the Digital Agency.

The council was co-chaired by Mr. Kono Taro, Minister for Digital Transformation, Mr. Matsumoto Takeaki, Minister for Internal Affairs and Communications, and Ms. Ota Fusae, State Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry, from the Japanese side. Mr. Thierry Breton, European Commissioner for Internal Market presented from the EU side.

At the council, the representatives of these three ministries and Mr. Breton, European Commissioner exchanged views and issued a joint statement as an outcome of the discussions.

Main results of the Japan-EU Digital Partnership Council

Key points of the statement are as follows:

  1. The Japan-EU Digital Partnership Council met in Tokyo, with the Digital Agency, MIC, METI and the EU as co-chairs.
  2. Japan and the EU stand united more than ever to defend their common values and vision of the world based on a free, open, and rules-based international order.
  3. Both sides have worked to deliver results in the strategic areas of semiconductors, High Performance Computing (HPC), quantum technology, 5G/Beyond 5G, Data Free Flow with Trust (DFFT), digital trade principles, and resilient digital connectivity, while also pursuing a constructive dialogue in the areas of platform regulation, data governance, and cybersecurity.
  4. Seizing the opportunity of the Council, Mr. Nishimura Yasutoshi, Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry, and Commissioner Breton intend to sign a Memorandum of Cooperation on semiconductors.
  5. Seizing the opportunity of the Council, MIC Minister Matsumoto and Commissioner Breton signed a Memorandum of Cooperation on submarine cables for secure, resilient, and sustainable global connectivity.
  6. Following joint preparatory work under the Japan-EU Digital Partnership, the EuroHPC Joint Undertaking launched a call for proposals on HPC aiming to promote its reciprocal use. Both sides will start discussing the reciprocal use of quantum computing environments.
  7. Since 5G networks are being expanded and the development of 6G technology has started, both sides will continue to discuss the importance of open, secure, innovative, and resilient communication infrastructures.
  8. Both sides will establish a permanent communication channel to update each other regularly on respective legislative and non-legislative frameworks aimed at realizing trustworthy AI. Both sides intend to contribute to the G7 discussions on generative AI in the Hiroshima AI process.
  9. Both sides aim to ensure the free and trusted flow of data across borders underpinned by strong data protection rules. At the G7 Hiroshima Summit, both sides supported the priority of setting up an Institutional Arrangement for a Partnership (IAP) to operationalize DFFT. They concurred in the G7 and G20 context to promote bilateral best practices enabling DFFT.
  10. These results represent tangible progress in priority workstreams established under the Japan-EU Digital Partnership. They have also put in place the foundations to establish operational cooperation in the cybersecurity field, including information sharing and joint training.
  11. Both sides envisage pursuing future common actions in areas with high economic potential, such as generative AI, digital transformation of SMEs and interoperability of trust services underpinning digital trade and DFFT. The co-chairs intend to meet again in 2024 to review progress, and make further steps to deepen their partnership.

Discussions at the Japan-EU Digital Partnership Council

Minister Kono and Mr. Breton discussed issues such as Data Free Flow with Trust (DFFT) and future cooperation and agreed that Japan and EU should aim for early implementation of use cases to improve mutual identification and interoperability. In addition, Japan and the EU reaffirmed their unprecedented unity in upholding a free and open rules-based international order, while also protecting their shared values and vision.

Photo of  the 3 participating ministers from Japan (Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications, Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, and Digital Agency) and Mr. Breton.

Minister Kono speaking at the council.

Bilateral Meeting with Mr. Breton, European Commissioner

Prior to the council, a bilateral meeting was held between Minister Kono and Mr. Breton. Japan expressed its gratitude for the EU's cooperation in endorsing the establishment of the IAP at this year's G7 Digital and Tech Ministers’ Meeting and discussed the ways to cooperate on specific future projects, including the IAP, at the earliest opportunity. They also discussed the creation of mutual recognition mechanisms, such as digital identities and certificates, and the possibility of interoperability between the 2 countries. In addition, they discussed the initiative of multilateral cooperation concerning Peppol, which the Digital Agency is working on with the aim of having European countries take the lead in the establishment of PINT, a new international standard specification for e-invoices.
Through the meeting, Minister Kono and Mr. Breton both confirmed the importance of bilateral cooperation to further strengthen the Japan-EU partnership.

Photo of Minister Kono (left) and Mr. Breton, European Commissioner (right).

Photo of bilateral meeting between Minister Kono and Mr. Breton, European Commissioner.

Contact Us