Japan may waive maglev train technology license fees in deal with U.S.


The government is considering providing Japanese magnetically levitated train system technology to the United States without license fees, a government source said Sunday.

Tokyo is considering the possibility in order to realize a maglev high-speed train service linking Washington and Baltimore, Maryland, the source said.

Japan has also unofficially offered loans worth about ¥500 billion to help bring about the service, which is expected to require about ¥1 trillion in investments.

The government is making arrangements so that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe can offer the technological assistance when he meets with U.S. President Barack Obama in Tokyo on April 24, according to the source.

The government sees the maglev technology offer as a “symbol of the Japan-U.S. alliance” and is considering the free provision of technology in cooperation with Central Japan Railway Co. (JR Tokai), which has been promoting the technology abroad, the source said.

Abe proposed to provide the maglev technology in a meeting with Obama in February last year.

On Saturday, Abe and U.S. Ambassador to Japan Caroline Kennedy took a ride on a maglev train on JR Central’s test line in Yamanashi Prefecture.

  • zer0_0zor0

    Could be a win-win situation if the deal promotes the development and implementation of the technology.

    A line like that in the USA would lead to a succession of orders for the same in other countries considering setting up high-speed rail lines. Hard to think of better advertising than that…

  • James

    USA sells its military hardware to Japan at full cost so why should Japan sell or license its technology below its original cost?