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Japan looks to self-driving cars to bolster transport access

Service to ferry rural seniors targeted for 2020

TOKYO -- The Japanese government aims to have self-driving vehicles provide transport for senior citizens and others with limited vehicle access by 2020, encouraging development of the technology to address growing social challenges.

A government council on investments for the future, chaired by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, will soon set 2020 as the target for commercializing automated-driving technology in a push to improve access to transportation and boost efficiency in the logistics sector. Necessary legal changes will be made starting next fiscal year, with testing of specific technologies set to begin shortly.

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