News & Updates

NET ZERO Leaders Summit (Japan Business Conference 2021): Meeting the challenge to achieve carbon neutrality through a positive cycle of economic growth and environmental protection

Aug 11, 2021

Event in progress

  • Main Program: Global leaders discuss Net Zero – Streaming available again from August 11 (Wed)
  • Events organized by JETRO overseas offices will be held sequentially from tomorrow
  • Japan Technology Showcase: Individual appointments with Japanese companies and local governments available at the virtual venue

Registration is still open (free of charge)


The "NET ZERO Leaders Summit (Japan Business Conference 2021)" opened on July 28, an online event organized by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry and the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) to offer you information on the attractiveness of the investment environment in Japan and initiatives toward the realization of Net Zero.

At the “Japan Technology Showcase” area of the virtual venue, 54 exhibitors* introduced their technologies and services through PR videos and materials. The venue was filled with live interaction between attendees as avatars. Attendees can continue to visit as an avatar to view the videos and materials at each booth and set up individual meetings with each exhibitor until September 10.
*Some exhibitors hold joint booths. There are a total of 50 booths.

Main Program available on demand

On July 28 and 29, three panel discussions where fifteen global leaders gathered to discuss the latest trends of Net Zero, as well as a keynote speech by Mr. Tokura Masakazu, Chairman of the Japan Business Federation (Keidanren), and video messages from Prime Minister Suga and Mr. Kajiyama Hiroshi, Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry.

The Main Program will be streamed again, this time on demand, in the virtual venue from August 11. You can fast forward or rewind to watch your favorite scenes. It is possible to either view them at the 3D virtual venue as shown in the image, or view them in 2D. All materials will remain available until September 10.

Below is a summary of the Main Program's discussions.

Main Program

(Available on demand from Wednesday, August 11)

Video message from Prime Minister Suga

Prime Minister Suga expressed his expectations for lively discussions by the leaders so that like the Olympic Games, the event could provide dreams and hopes to people all around the world. He mentioned that achieving a decarbonized society is a driving force for sustainable economic growth, and that he would very much welcome the investment and cooperation in the large green market that will emerge in Japan. He concluded his message by hoping that the event would provide a great opportunity for Japan and the world to advance together.

SUGA Yoshihide
Prime Minister

Video message from Minister Kajiyama

Minister Kajiyama expressed his intention to direct all available policies toward achieving carbon neutrality. He also expressed his expectations that this event would provide the world with an opportunity to learn about Japanese companies, and trigger changes and efforts toward decarbonization and other initiatives.

Minister of Economy,Trade and Industry

Opening Remarks from Chairman Sasaki

Chairman Sasaki of JETRO stated that in order to achieve carbon neutrality, we need to combine new ideas, technologies, funds, and knowhow. In addition, governments, industry, and everyone from overseas should join together to create a Net Zero world.

SASAKI Nobuhiko
Chairman and CEO, Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO)

Keynote Speech from Keidanren Chairman Tokura

Keidanren Chairman Tokura proposed that green transformation (the fundamental transformation of economy and society) should be promoted in order to achieve carbon neutrality. He also mentioned that the Japanese business community would steadily promote proactive measures such as the "carbon neutrality action plans," "challenge zero," and "information disclosure" together with the government.

TOKURA Masakazu
Chairman, KEIDANREN (Japan Business Federation)

Panel Discussion

Fifteen leaders from companies and organizations active in the global economy held three panel discussions and deliberated over the world's most advanced initiatives and future visions under the theme of "Realizing Net Zero". This global issue was discussed from the point of view of various regions and different business fields.

Panel Discussion 1 - Theme: “Green Innovation”


Innovation in businesses is essential to achieving net zero. Panelists discussed, among other topics, initiatives as a global company and the path toward future technological innovation.

Main topics of discussion

  • There are three principles of technology innovation, including trust.
  • Economic performance is essential for long-term performance.
  • The public and private sectors each play different roles, and it is also important to involve the people.
  • Achieving carbon neutrality requires partnerships between companies.
  • It is necessary to accelerate goal achievement through information disclosure and deregulation.
  • Young people's passion for the global environment. What happens if employers are not conscious of it?
  • [Moderator] TSUSAKA Miki, Managing Director & Senior Partner, Boston Consulting Group (Japan)
  • Benoît POTIER, Chairman & CEO, Air Liquide (France)
  • Henrik ANDERSEN, President & CEO, Vestas Wind Systems A/S (Denmark)*Recorded separately
  • Virginia M. ROMETTY, Former Chairman, President & CEO, IBM (USA)
  • Kathy MATSUI, General Partner, MPower Partners (Japan)

Panel Discussion 2 - Theme: “Sustainable Finance”


Medium- to long-term support is critical to companies' low-carbon transition. Participants discussed the progress of sustainable finance from various perspectives.

Main topics of discussion

  • Providing support for customers in all segments, not only in agriculture, but in all sectors.
  • Inventing sustainable bonds beyond businesses for supporting corporate transformation as a whole.
  • Promoting long-term business change through investor collaboration (Net-Zero Asset Owners’ Alliance).
  • Transition paths vary depending on the region and economic situation, including Japan-specific issues.
  • The importance of engaging with stakeholders as a financial institution.
  • The Japanese government working on a sector-specific roadmap.
  • [Moderator] SASADA Tamao, Country Executive for Japan, Bank of America (Japan)
  • Fiona REYNOLDS, CEO, PRI (Principles for Responsible Investment) (UK)
  • José Ricardo Fagonde FORNI, Chief Financial and Investor Relations Officer (CFO), Banco do Brasil S.A. (Brazil)
  • Alberto DE PAOLI, Chief Financial Officer, Enel S.p.A. (Italy)
  • MIKE Kanetsugu, Member of the Board of Directors, Chairman (Corporate Executive), Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, Inc. (Japan)

Panel Discussion 3 - Theme: “Transition in Emerging Countries”


In areas where industrialization is accelerating, efforts in accordance with local characteristics are needed in order to achieve net zero. Panelists discussed the efforts in each region, with a view to pursuing both economic growth and environmental protection.

Main topics of discussion

  • There are two challenges to energy transition, including the challenge of passing the peak while continuing development.
  • The governments (even in developing countries) have major aspirations for clean energy and transition. Renewable energy is also becoming more competitive, and it is possible to use energy storage systems that have advanced in technological innovation.
  • Natural gas is important as a bridging fuel for energy transition.
  • Collaboration with Japan. Each collaboration will lead to carbon neutrality in the future.
  • Being environmentally friendly is a burden in rural areas. The key is lowering the total cost.
  • Each region has its own challenges, and there is no single path toward carbon neutrality.
  • [Moderator] NOBUTANI Kazushige, President, Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO)
  • ZHOU Liyang, Chairman of the Board, Juhua Group Corporation (and Zhejiang Juhua Co., Ltd.) (China)
  • Tengku Muhammad Taufik, President & Group Chief Executive Officer (CEO), PETROLIAM Nasional Berhad (PETRONAS) (Malaysia)
  • Sumant SINHA, Founder, Chairman & Managing Director, ReNew Power Private Limited (India)
  • AKITA Satoshi, Founder & CEO, WASSHA Inc. (Japan and Tanzania)

*Country names are where the headquarters or the speakers are located

JETRO overseas office online event series to start tomorrow sequentially

Events organized by JETRO overseas offices will be held sequentially from tomorrow. The event will begin at 15:00 Japan time, hosted by JETRO Singapore.

Event Schedule*

August 11 (Wed) 15:00 (JST) / 14:00 (SGT)-
Event title:
Venture Opportunities in Regional Japan
S6IX International Accelerator, Kanagawa Prefecture
Hosted by:
JETRO Singapore
Demand for innovation solutions demand in Japan can be found at the national level, prefectural and city level, and even town level, focusing on different business sectors. Many are aware about the national level needs, but not the regional level needs where one might find additional business opportunities. This webinar will be sharing some regional initiatives in Japan - Kamiyama Town in Tokushima Prefecture and Kanagawa Prefecture, to broaden your choices for your business venture into Japan.
August 13 (Fri) 22:00 (JST) / 9:00 (EDT)
Event title:
Go Green! Unlimited Potential Together with Japan
CIC Captains of Innovation, Techstars, WiL, Daikin U.S. Corporation, Mitsubishi Chemical Holdings Corporation, NTT
Hosted by:
JETRO North America
Join us for a special look into the unlimited potential of Green innovation with Japan. First, sit down with renowned accelerators from the US. In fireside chats, they will talk about their experiences, challenges, and successes in Green technology, and provide valuable insight into the opportunities for US startups to collaborate with Japanese corporates. After that, hear from top Japanese corporates pioneering the latest in Greentech. They will share their approaches and visions for achieving a positive cycle of both economic growth and environmental protection. This program will inspire and enlighten you with the potential for Green business expansion, together with Japan.
August 30 (Mon) 15:00 (JST) / 16:00 (AEST)
Event title:
Building Your Business in Japan – Business Law Essentials for Australians
ITO Genichiro, Legal Counsel
Hosted by:
JETRO Sydney

JETRO Sydney is pleased to present the webinar series “Building Your Business in Japan – Business Law Essentials for Australians”.
We encourage all companies, especially Australian companies, which have innovative idea and have aspirations to succeed in Japan to participate. The opportunity for innovative Australian companies to solve complex issues both in Japan and in partnership globally has never been clearer.
Japanese government policies and funding are fostering the development of innovation and technology and attracting innovative companies into the Japanese market.
This webinar series will help you to understand:

  • The business opportunities in Japan for companies, especially Australian companies;
  • The types of business structure;
  • How to set up/register your business in Japan; and
  • Key legal issues around fundraising in Japan.
September 3 (Fri) 11:00 (JST) / 10:00 (HKT)
Event title:
Why Japan? How to Utilize Japan to Make Success
Hosted by:
JETRO Hong Kong
September 7 (Tues) 17:00 (JST)/ 9:00 (BST)/ 10:00 (CET)
Event title:
Japan’s Hydrogen Fuel Cell Sector – Opportunities, Lessons & Advice
Hosted by:
JETRO London, Düsseldorf
September 9 (Thu) – 10 (Fri)
Event title:
Global Startup Connection -J-Startups for NET ZERO
Hosted by:
Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI)
English, Japanese

*Details of the program, including the streaming time, will be announced through upcoming news release and on the summit’s official website.

* Visit the summit’s official website for more details

Ongoing exhibition by 54 Japanese companies and local governments at “Japan Technology Showcase”

At the Japan Technology Showcase, participants can visit each exhibitor's booth as an avatar to see what outstanding technology and services the exhibitors have to offer. Participants can communicate with the exhibitors in real time via chat*, set individual online meetings at a later date by the scheduling tool at the booth, and more.

*Exhibitors will be available for live interaction, especially prior to and after each event from Wednesday, August 11. (Exhibitors can be reached by email when absent

Details of NET ZERO Leaders Summit (Japan Business Conference 2021)

The NET ZERO Leaders Summit (Japan Business Conference 2021) aims to promote the attractiveness of Japan's investment environment and efforts to achieve Net Zero.

Organizers: Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI), Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO)
Event date: From Wednesday July 28, 2021, online

* The virtual platform will be open from 10:00 am on July 28 till 11:59 pm on September 10 (JST)

Event overview:

  • Main Program by global leaders * Available from 3:00 pm on August 11 (JST)
    Panel discussion between 15 current global business leaders on Net Zero trends
  • JETRO overseas offices event series
    Held in sequence from August 11 (JST)
"Japan Technology Showcase"
Fifty-four companies and local governments with advanced Japanese technology and services hold PR booths at our virtual venue to showcase the appeal of the investment environment in Japan
"Video Library"
Discover videos related to the attractiveness of Japan's investment environment and the realization of carbon neutrality.
Communication by Avatar
In our virtual venue, participants can use avatars to communicate in real time with exhibitors and other participants

Attendance fee:


Contact information: General public
NET ZERO Leaders Summit(Japan Business Conference 2021)Secretariat
Contact information: Press
NET ZERO Leaders Summit(Japan Business Conference 2021)Public Relations Office