Foreign technology giants that do not comply with requests to register their local units in Japan as required by law will be subject to penalties, Justice Minister Yoshihisa Furukawa said Tuesday.
Most of the 48 foreign IT companies, including Google LLC, Meta Platforms Inc and Twitter Inc, that have received registration requests from the Justice Ministry and the communications ministry have so far failed to comply, according to Furukawa.
The Japanese government is aiming to strengthen business monitoring of foreign companies that offer services used by a large number of people in the country.
With cyberbullying a prevalent issue, the registration of social media companies will also make it possible for Japanese courts to request user details.
According to Japan's corporate law, local representatives of a foreign company that fails to register despite an intent to conduct business in Japan will be subject to a fine of up to 1 million yen.
"We will work with relevant ministries and agencies, including notifying courts of violations, to speed up registration," Furukawa said at a press conference.
Six of the 48 companies have so far responded to requests to register, while another handful responded after being notified in writing earlier this month to register by June 13, the Justice Ministry said.© KYODO