Agreement with Germany Trade and Invest (GTAI) on launch of “Japanese-German/German-Japanese Innovation Initiative 160” and announcement of joint press release in Berlin

December 2021

In 2021; which marked the 160th anniversary year since 1861, when Japan and Prussia signed a treaty on friendship, shipping and trade; JETRO and Germany Trade and Invest (GTAI) agreed to launch the “Japanese-German/German-Japanese Innovation Initiative 160” to promote practical solutions with interactive innovation between Japan and Germany, and also cross-border innovation for current global matters such as an aging society, the COVID-19 crisis, global warming, SDGs and so on, cooperating with both the Japanese and German governments and industrial supporting organizations.

JETRO and GTAI will annually co-organize supporting programs and mutual introduction of cases, and play up cases of successful innovative by Japanese and German companies and organizations, through supporting startups and business matching by Japanese and German industrial supporting organizations as follows:

On December 16, at the “Japanese-German/German-Japanese Innovation Initiatives 160” Kick-off Seminar in Berlin, Mr. Sasaki Nobuhiko, Chairman and CEO of JETRO, and Dr. Robert Hermann, CEO of GTAI, announced the launch of the initiative and provided the first joint press release between the organizations.

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From next year JETRO and GTAI will collaborate mainly on the following two points.

  1. Joint business networking events
  2. Playing up successful cases as the “Best practices of the Year for Japanese-German/German Japanese innovation”
    • by big companies, SMEs, organizations
    • with sustainability, originality, and innovation
    • contributing to solving global matters such as an aging society, the COVID-19 crisis, global warming or SDGs

Currently there are around 1900 Japanese companies with bases in Germany (reference: data of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs), the highest number in Europe. In contrast, there are around 470 German companies with bases in Japan (reference: the German Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Japan [AHK Japan]). With this new initiative between Japan and Germany, it is expected that new innovation will be created through various collaborative activities between Japanese and German startups and organizations, in addition to the previously mentioned companies, and that solutions will be proposed one after another for global matters in various kinds of areas, such as carbon neutrality, including renewable energy, use of hydrogen and EV; digital technology; healthcare; next-generation vehicles; AI; robotics; and agriculture.

Main schedule in 2022
Co-organizing a networking event at the Robotics Festival in Saxony next September
Co-organizing a business-matching event for both Japanese and German startups in the summer
Promoting the “Best practices of the Year” for Japanese-German innovation in the autumn.