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OKINAWA Prefecture, Japan - The Optimal Business Environment for Expanding into Japan

 2021-03-09 By: Hiroshi Ueda

Building-up of the IT Industry in Okinawa:
Okinawa Prefecture has focused on developing the Information and communications technology industries as an economic strategy. As a result, 490 IT companies have established businesses, and about 30,000 new jobs have been generated as of anuary 2020.

4 Reasons to Expand into Okinawa:
1. Geographical characteristics
Naha Airport's domestic and international route networks are among the best in Japan. Connect with Asia's major cities in 4 hours or less with flights from Okinawa. Also reduced risk of simultaneous disasters due to the prefecture's distance from mainland Japan. Okinawa provides answers to businesses' issues by serving as a base for dispersing development and data collection activities.

2. Substantial IT Infrastructure
With submarine fiber-optic cables directly connecting the Asia-Okinawa-Tokyo area and public-private cloud data centers, an environment is in place to create two-way business between Asia and Japan. Also, The Okinawa IT Shinryo Park, a strategic base for resorts and IT as a bridge between Japan and Asia, and other facilities operated by municipalities have been established in various locations.

3. Support system for your business.
 Special tax incentives such as the highest rate of income tax deduction in Japan (up to 40%) and investment tax credit are available.
These include subsidies for development costs related to business expansion into Okinawa support for demonstration activities using IT technology, support for upgrading the skills of IT engineers, and subsidies for new hires.

4. Resort Location
Surrounded by a warm climate and abundant nature, you can enjoy both your work and private life.

Okinawa's Vision “ResorTech Okinawa”:
Okinawa Prefecture is working on the promotion of the IT industry with "ResorTech Okinawa" as the platform for industrial policies. ResorTech is a made-up word combining "resort" and "technology". With development not just limited to the IT and Tourism Industries, but extending to the agricultural, retail, manufacturing, medicine, and numerous other industries, ResorTech aims to enrich the daily lives of people in the region through, technology accumulation and industry development.
The origin of “resort” consists of “re”, meaning frequently or customarily, and a French word “sort”, meaning going out. Combined, the word refers to a place that people visit frequently.

Three major activities of ResorTech Okinawa
1. As the international hub for technology exchange in Asia, we plan and organize the “Okinawa International IT Trade Fair”
Okinawa International IT Trade Fair is an annually held event comprising of various exhibitions, business matchings, and seminars. These events are designed to promote technology usage in other industries. IT technology should result in productivity increase and value-added goods and services for those industries.
2. Providing testbed environments for demonstration experiments (ResorTech 365)
“ResorTech 365” is defined as the persistent commitment to expand and refine the concept of “ResorTech Okinawa” on daily basis through trial and error across the island, positioning Okinawa as the showcase for ResorTech of the world.
3. ResorTech Okinawa provides the fundamental platform for the Okinawa industrial policies.
The ultimate goal of these activities is to help solve social issues and create sustainable economic growth at the same time. We aim to achieve these goals by promoting technology usage, providing testbed environments, supporting startups, and developing human resources.

For more information regarding the business attraction of Okinawa, please kindly download our guide:
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