Japan is working hard to raise the priority of business aviation, making major and regional airports easier for business jets to use.

The country has set ambitious targets to double foreign visitors to 40 million a year by the 2020 Olympics, and encourage them to spend $8 billion while doing so. Business aviation is expected to play a role, not least because the people who use it are exactly those Japan would like to attract.

But to do so, Japan’s airports must be more business jet-friendly.

The Civil Aviation Bureau of the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism, working with other government agencies, is pushing the idea that business jets can bring a very high value per landing, especially in terms of economic development and growing business in Japan.

Japan’s Aichi Prefecture/Nagoya Airport, the Japanese Business Aviation Association and Narita Airport can be found clustered around Booth P821. They report progress at Japan’s 11 main airports, although differing at each, on reducing the time needed to apply for slots, increasing the number of slots and the priority afforded business aviation, and increasing parking facilities. Some airports have added dedicated Customs, Immigration and Quarantine (CIQ), or added “Fast Track” for business jet travelers.

The opening in February 2017 of a new expressway around Tokyo makes it feasible to travel in the region from either Tokyo Narita or Haneda airports, and the government is considering utilizing them as a pair in developing business aviation strategy, especially for the Olympics.

The movements of international business aviation in Japan have been increasing year by year and the annual average growth rate during the past five years was 14%. Traffic between Japan and the Asian region accounted for 60% of that. However, the number of movements is still comparatively small.