The government will launch a program to give points to shoppers who choose to have delivery parcels left outside their front doors in order to reduce the workload of delivery drivers.

The demonstration project is the centerpiece of the government's emergency policy package, adopted Friday, to tackle the "2024 problem," a term used to describe anticipated truck driver shortages when new overtime regulations go into effect next year.

The government also set a target of doubling the volume of shipments using trains or ships within about 10 years to reduce the workload of delivery truck drivers and improve logistics efficiency.

"The government will make united, tireless efforts to innovate our nation's logistics," Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said at the ministerial meeting.

The emergency package comprises urgent concrete measures that were included in logistics-related initiatives drawn up in June.

The government will reflect the policy package in comprehensive economic measures that it will compile at the end of October.

In June, the government set a goal of halving the re-delivery rate, which then stood at 12% or so, to 6% by fiscal 2024.

The package calls for a pilot project to grant shopping points to consumers who chose to have parcels left at their doors or delivered to convenience stores, as well as those who set delivery dates that give plenty of time to delivery drivers.

Under the project, the government is expected to provide subsidies to mail-order business operators to cover costs to update their systems and introduce the point system.

The government will promote the adoption of a standardized container and the development of port facilities to encourage the modal shift from trucks to trains and ships.

In fiscal 2020, the volume of rail shipments stood at 18 million tons, while that of marine shipments stood at 50 million tons. The government hopes to double both figures in about a decade.

The government will also encourage major shippers and logistics companies to set appropriate shipping rates and shorten waiting times for shipments. It plans to submit a related bill to parliament next year to oblige them to draw up plans to deal with the matter.

The revised labor standards law will reduce the upper limit for truck drivers' overtime to 960 hours per year, starting next April.

The measure means that the amount of cargo a truck driver can transport will decrease, possibly leading to logistics bottlenecks. The government has said that Japan may face transportation capacity shortfalls of 14% in fiscal 2024 and 34% in fiscal 2030 if measures to tackle the issue are not taken.