Panel sets telecommuting target

JIJI

A government panel set out goals Friday to up telecommuting.

The number of companies with telecommuting systems designed for child-care and other employees is expected to triple by 2020 from some 4,000 in fiscal 2012, which ended in March, according to the information technology promotion strategy adopted by the panel.

The panel, known as the IT Strategic Headquarters, also proposed that the government make more of its data available to the private sector, including statistics and information on disaster countermeasures. Private-sector access to such data should be expanded to a level comparable with developed nations, the IT strategy says.

The strategy will be reflected when Prime Minister Shinzo Abe releases his official economic growth strategy in June just before the Upper House election.

The panel did not set a direction for IT-related reforms, such as a proposal to ease online sales of drugs, but urged an action plan by year’s end.