Business

Japan to promote use of empty buildings as satellite offices

JIJI

The land ministry aims to support efforts to utilize the country’s empty buildings as satellite offices or shared workspaces, according to informed sources.

The Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism Ministry hopes to have related costs included in its budget request for fiscal 2019, which starts in April next year, the sources said.

It expects to provide financial backing for the intangible aspects of such efforts, such as helping with costs related to public relations and the payment of fees for consultations with interior designers about renovation work. Expenses for actual renovation work will not be eligible for ministry assistance.

The initiative is intended not only to promote the utilization of vacant properties but also to support efforts to enhance productivity and introduce diversified work styles.

The ministry hopes to implement related measures by expanding the scope of a model project it launched in fiscal 2017 for promoting the use of vacant houses.

It will solicit space utilization proposals from collaborative bodies set up by real estate agencies and municipalities, and then decide which ones to support.

The ministry also aims to support the organization of consultations for owners of empty buildings.