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Japan to subsidize pickup lockers to reduce parcel deliveries

Online shopping, shrinking workforce pushing logistics industry to the limit

Public funds will help pay for parcel pickup lockers to help cut down on unnecessary redeliveries.

TOKYO -- With the boom in internet shopping imposing a heavy burden on Japanese logistics providers, the government will start subsidizing the installation of pickup lockers at train stations and convenience stores, with an eye toward reducing repeat delivery runs.

About 500 million yen ($4.38 million) has been allocated under the draft fiscal 2017 budget for the scheme, which launches in April. The government will shoulder half of the estimated cost of 1.5 million yen to 2 million yen per location to install the lockers, which allow packages to be left securely for consumers to pick up at their convenience. Only ones that accept deliveries from any logistics company will qualify for the subsidy. The goal is to set up about 500 new locations in the first year.

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