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Industry 4.0 and the location Düsseldorf/North Rhine-Westphalia create great interest in Japan

Tokyo, 21 October, 2015 – As part of the location marketing campaign "Germany at its best: North Rhine-Westphalia," the city of Düsseldorf and NRW.INVEST today led a business forum entitled "The Digital Transformation in Germany's Industrie 4.0: Innovative Solutions and Business Opportunities in Düsseldorf and North Rhine-Westphalia". The future topic Industry 4.0 is also of particular significance for the Japanese economy. Over 350 representatives from Japanese businesses and institutions registered for the forum.

The objective of the event is to win Japanese businesses for the future topic Industry 4.0 and the location of Düsseldorf/North Rhine-Westphalia. The outstanding expertise in the field of Industry 4.0 is the focus of the presentations by the Japanese and North Rhine-Westphalian firms and institutions. "The Japanese economy has become more innovative and competitive in recent years, and is a strong partner for German industry, in particular in North Rhine-Westphalia," explains Dr. Günther Horzetzky, State Secretary at the North Rhine-Westphalian Ministry of Economic Affairs. "We want to further this cooperation and encourage Japanese businesses to participate in future trends in North Rhine-Westphalia."

With its combination of strong industrial structures and innovative IT firms and research facilities, North Rhine-Westphalia is an important driving force in Industry 4.0 and the associated digital transformation. A strong, dynamic ICT landscape supports the development of innovative solutions. The state capital of Düsseldorf, as a leading location for the mobile telecommunications industry, is a hub for the digital transformation. At the Vodafone Innovation Park, companies are developing smart products and services such as mobile payment, e-health and machine-to-machine communication with the help of a well-developed technical infrastructure and numerous project partners. Mayor Thomas Geisel: "As the top location in the mobile industry, Düsseldorf occupies an exceptional position in Europe with regard to key technologies of digital transformation. Düsseldorf and the federal state of NRW are the ideal location in which to initiate R&D partnership projects in cooperation with industrial clients or developers of digital communication platforms or applications."

North Rhine-Westphalia and Düsseldorf in particular offer an ideal location for research and development, production and distribution for the expansion of Japanese industry in Europe. "The Japanese economy is currently strongly represented in North Rhine-Westphalia and in particular in Düsseldorf," explains Petra Wassner, CEO of NRW.INVEST. "New investment and cooperation opportunities between Japanese and North Rhine-Westphalian businesses and research facilities are arising, particularly in the area of digital transformation of the economy."

The Japanese in North Rhine-Westphalia
There are 12,000 Japanese people living in North Rhine-Westphalia, of whom 6,450 are in Düsseldorf and its surrounding area. North Rhine-Westphalia has over 500 Japanese firms and as such is the preferred European investment location for Japanese businesses. 360 Japanese firms are located in Düsseldorf alone. Well-known firms such as Amada, Denso, Nabtesco, Mitsubishi Electric, Komatsu Mining, Renesas Electronics and Hitachi are already investing in North Rhine-Westphalia or Düsseldorf.