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AWS plans to invest 2.26 trillion yen into its Japanese cloud infrastructure by 2027

  • New AWS economic impact study for Japan estimates that this planned investment will contribute 5.57 trillion yen to Japan’s GDP, and support an average of 30,500 full-time equivalent jobs at local businesses each year

  • AWS’s total investment into cloud infrastructure in Japan from 2011 to 2027 is estimated to be 3.77 trillion yen

Amazon Web Services (AWS) recently announced its plans to invest 2.26 trillion yen into its existing cloud infrastructure in Tokyo and Osaka by 2027 to meet growing customer demand for cloud services in Japan. According to the new AWS Economic Impact Study (EIS) for Japan, this planned investment is estimated to contribute 5.57 trillion yen to Japan’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), and support an estimated average of 30,500 full-time equivalent (FTE) jobs in local Japanese businesses each year. Having already invested 1.51 trillion yen in Japan from 2011 to 2022, AWS’s planned total investment into cloud infrastructure in the country by 2027 will be approximately 3.77 trillion yen.

Hundreds of thousands of active customers use the two AWS Regions in Japan to digitally transform (DX) their businesses. AWS opened its first office in Japan in 2009 and launched the AWS Asia Pacific (Tokyo) Region in 2011, and the AWS Asia Pacific (Osaka) Region in 2021. As demand for cloud services to drive the government’s DX agenda grew in Japan, AWS invested 1.51 trillion yen between 2011 and 2022 to construct, connect, operate, and maintain AWS data centers. This is estimated to have contributed 1.46 trillion yen to Japan’s GDP and supported more than 7,100 FTE jobs. These positions, including construction, facility maintenance, engineering, telecommunications, and other jobs within the country’s broader economy, are part of the AWS data center supply chain in Japan.

“The adoption of digital technology has become a source of a country’s competitiveness,” said Takuya Hirai, former digital minister and current chair of headquarters for the promotion of a digital society, Liberal Democratic Party. “The development of digital infrastructure in Japan is key to strengthening the country's industrial competitiveness, and data centers play an important role to this end. It promotes the use of important technologies such as AI and improves the capabilities of research and development in Japan. I greatly welcome AWS’s long-term investments in strategic areas for Japan, such as data centers, digital workforce development, AI, and renewable energy. These investments will create local jobs, improve productivity, grow markets for digital transformation and green transformation, and accelerate innovation for Japan. I hope that AWS will play an even greater role in strengthening Japan's digital industrial competitiveness in the future.”

“For over a decade, AWS has been committed to helping our Japanese customers access the latest cutting-edge technology, build digital solutions on highly resilient and secure cloud infrastructure, and adapt their businesses to maintain an edge in today’s complex economic environment,” said Tadao Nagasaki, president of AWS in Japan. “Our investment into cloud infrastructure generates a ripple effect across the Japanese industries including the public and government sector. It will help more Japanese organizations with the ability to access and adopt new, emerging and transformational digital technologies such as artificial intelligence and machine learning. We are committed to and excited about the future of Japan’s digital economy.”

In Japan, AWS works with the local and international partner community, through the AWS Partner Network, which includes 100,000 independent software vendors (ISVs) and systems integrators (SIs). Since 2021, AWS Partners cover 47 prefectures in Japan, offering more choices in digital tools and services for customers, further accelerating digital transformation. Fourteen Japanese companies are recognized as top AWS Premier Tier Services Partners, and eight of them have entered into strategic collaboration agreements with AWS. These Japanese partners include NEC, Fujitsu, Classmethod, NTT DATA, Hitachi Systems, Severworks, SCSK and NHN Techorus.

Accelerating local generative AI innovation in Japan

AWS’s investment will continue to play a pivotal role in helping organizations across industries in Japan to boost national productivity and transform customer experiences. Today, customers such as Asahi Group Japan,Ltd., FP Corporation, KDDI Corporation, Marubeni Corporation, and Nomura Holdings,Inc., RareJob Technologies, Takenaka Corporation, Ricoh Company, Ltd. and more leverage AWS’s generative AI offerings to deliver productivity gains, reimagine customer experiences, and drive new business growth. To accelerate generative AI adoption in Japan, AWS announced the general availability of Amazon Bedrock, in the AWS Asia Pacific (Tokyo) Region in October 2023. Bedrock is a fully managed service that offers a choice of high-performing foundation models (FMs) via a single API, enabling customers to run and store their generative AI applications and data locally and deploy workloads closer to their end-users.

AWS is also committed to accelerating the development of more diverse and industry-specific large language models (LLMs) with the launch of the AWS LLM Development Support Program in Japan. This program provides select organizations with technical mentoring and US$6 million (or 868 million yen) investment in the form of AWS credits to build and train LLMs on AWS, expert guidance for selecting and procuring computing resources, and business-side support to grow users. In July 2023, 17 diverse organizations were selected to participate.

In June 2023, AWS invested US $100 million in the Generative AI Innovation Center, a program that connects AWS machine learning and AI experts with customers and partners worldwide to accelerate enterprise innovation and success with generative AI. Customers in Japan such as Asahi Group Japan, a Japanese beverage holding company headquartered in Sumida, Tokyo, are collaborating with the Generative AI Innovation Center to drive new product innovation using data analysis and improve operational efficiency. AWS has also announced a collection of free and low-cost training courses, including four available in Japanese, to help people understand, implement, and begin using generative AI.

Ripple effect into digital skills and sustainability

The economic growth created by AWS investment in the AWS Asia Pacific (Tokyo) Region and the AWS Asia Pacific (Osaka) Region will lead to a ripple effect in the Japanese cloud community. This ripple effect will occur through accelerating productivity gains in the Japanese economy, empowering the digital transformation of businesses, including startups and small and medium sized businesses (SMBs), empowering the AWS Partner Network (APN), upskilling the cloud and digital workforce, developing renewable energy projects, and creating a positive impact in the communities where AWS operates.

Since 2017, AWS has offered training and skills development opportunities to more than 600,000 individuals in Japan in cloud-related technologies through its various learning offerings. With programs such as AWS Skill Builder, a digital learning experience with over 600 free on-demand cloud skills courses including over 500 in Japanese, AWS continues to help customers in Japan scale their training and education efforts throughout the country.

Amazon is committed to becoming a more sustainable business and reaching net-zero carbon emissions across its operations by 2040, 10 years ahead of the Paris Agreement, as part of the Climate Pledge. The Climate Pledge exists to bring together a cross-sector community of individuals and organizations to work to decarbonize our economy. In 2022, 90% of electricity consumed by Amazon was attributable to renewable energy sources, and the company is on a path to reach 100% by 2025. In Japan, Amazon has invested in four offsite renewable energy projects with a combined estimated capacity of over 120,000 megawatt hours. From 2014 through 2022, Amazon’s commitment to buy electricity produced by utility-scale renewable energy projects in Japan generated 2.72 billion yen of economic investment, contributed one billion yen to Japan’s GDP, and in 2022 alone supported an estimated 130 full-time equivalent jobs.

In addition to helping increase agility and reduce costs, moving to AWS is also significantly more sustainable, as AWS’s infrastructure is designed to operate efficiently at scale. According to a study conducted by 451 Research, cloud data centers are five times more energy efficient than on-premises data centers in Asia-Pacific, including Japan. Migrating IT workloads to AWS from on-premises would reduce associated carbon emissions on average by nearly 80%, and up to 93% once AWS operates on 100% renewable energy. Furthermore, AWS tools and solutions help accelerate the pace of innovation by businesses that leverage cloud computing to reach their sustainability goals.

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