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Amazon Web Services (AWS) announced that it is expanding its facilities in Tokyo and Osaka to meet the increasing demand from customers. This investment is in addition to the approximately USD 10 billion that AWS has already spent in Japan between 2011 and 2022.

Japan’s AI Sector Expansion

AWS first entered the Japanese market in 2009 and established a cloud region in Tokyo in 2011, followed by Osaka. This holds significant implications in the age of AI. As a major player in the global cloud computing industry, AWS's expansion into Japan underscores the increasing demand for scalable and innovative cloud services worldwide.

The establishment of cloud regions in Tokyo and Osaka by AWS not only facilitates the growth of the Japanese tech sector but also addresses specific needs of local businesses. The reduced latency afforded by these local cloud regions enhances the performance of AI applications, supporting real-time data processing and interactive functionalities. Additionally, AWS's presence allows businesses to meet data residency and compliance requirements, aligning with local regulations and industry standards. Moreover, the entry of AWS into Japan contributes to economic growth by attracting businesses, fostering technological innovation, and creating job opportunities in the tech industry.

The Need for Robust Semiconductor Infrastructure

This expansion comes at a time when Japan's AI sector is growing. Prime Minister, Fumio Kishida, has held meetings with Sam Altman, CEO of OpenAI, and Jensen Huang, CEO of NVIDIA, to discuss the country's AI and semiconductor infrastructure.

Japan's pursuit of a robust semiconductor and AI infrastructure stems from its commitment to technological innovation, economic growth, and national security. Semiconductors and AI technologies play pivotal roles in modern industries, from electronics to healthcare, and are key drivers of economic competitiveness. Japan's focus on securing a stable supply chain for semiconductors is driven by concerns regarding national security and the need to reduce dependencies on foreign sources, ensuring resilience against geopolitical disruptions. Furthermore, the emphasis on semiconductor and AI infrastructure aligns with Japan's broader economic goals, including job creation and economic diversification.

It has been reported that Japan is developing its own version of ChatGPT that will make use of the Japanese language instead of English translations. Major players in the market, including NEC, Fujitsu, and SoftBank, are investing millions into AI systems based on large language models (LLMs).

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