Japanese business leaders and a Nobel Prize-winning biologist have called upon the government to reform its vaccination program, including by allowing drive-thru inoculations, as the nation struggles to contain a resurgence of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Japan has secured the largest quantity of COVID-19 vaccines in Asia as it gears up for the summer Olympics. But it has inoculated only 1.6% of its population so far, the slowest among wealthy countries.

Twenty-four business leaders, including e-commerce group Rakuten's CEO Hiroshi Mikitani, and Nobel-winning stem cell biologist Shinya Yamanaka said a bolder and better coordinated effort was needed to speed up vaccinations.