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A government working group started considering Tuesday the possibility of integrating the country's My Number social security and taxation identification cards with driver's licenses, as part of efforts to facilitate the issuance of the cards.

The group, comprising officials of relevant ministries and agencies, and experts, has been assembled to discuss the promotion of My Number cards and digitization of administrative services.

At the inaugural meeting, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga instructed the compilation by year-end of a road map for the integration.

The group plans to hold a second meeting as early as next week to clarify issues regarding the integration of My Number cards with driver's licenses.

The government started issuing My Number cards in 2016, and hopes the cards will be issued to almost all citizens by the end of March 2023. As of the end of last month, however, the cards were held by only 16.7 percent of all citizens.

The government aims to increase the proportion of My Number card holders through the integration with driver's licenses, which have a high penetration rate in the country.

At the day's meeting, some experts referred to ideas about integrating My Number cards with smartphones in the future, and the government plans to study the feasibility of the proposal.

The working group is also expected to discuss the proposed mandatory linkage of the cards with deposit accounts.

Among other measures to promote use of My Number cards, the government is considering their integration with certificates for national qualifications and residence cards for foreign nationals, as well as a shopping point reward program set to begin in September for holders of the cards.

As part of measures to speed up the digitization of administrative procedures within local governments, the working group will discuss standardizing the systems they use to operate, in order to help them reduce development and maintenance costs.

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