Japan’s Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transportation and Tourism has approved 10 pilot projects to test the new level 4 Uncrewed Aerial Vehicle (UAV) regulation changes. All the 10 selected projects aim for last mile delivery in coordination with ground delivery robots (allowed to operate since last April). Most pilots will be tested in remote areas where high-value air delivery is expected to play a larger role, according to a post by an industry observer.
In line with Japan’s ambitious roadmap to deploy air mobility, last December the Government lifted the ban on Unmanned Aerial Vehicles in specially designated areas. Japan’s commitment to future air mobility was recently underlined during a Smart Mobility Challenge Public call last month, and the state is particularly interested in its integration with other digital initiatives such as the MyNumber ID system.
The current focus is directed towards industrial and specific use cases in the near term, and aerial mobility in the longer term. The first examples is likely to be the Osaka Expo 2025, where air taxis are expected to transport visitors to the main venues. The new regulation is headed towards that goal, and signals the Japanese government’s commitment to achieving a comprehensive air mobility environment.
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