The US and Japan announced on April 10 a political understanding that includes a Microsoft partnership partially focused on AI.

Under the deal, Microsoft will invest $2.9 billion in Japan over the next two years to support artificial intelligence (AI), cloud computing, and data centers.

The investment will also go toward training 3 million people through digital skills programs, establishing a Microsoft Research Lab in Japan, and creating a cooperative cybersecurity effort between the two governments.

Amazon Web Services (AWS) will separately invest $15 billion in Japan by 2027 to support cloud infrastructure for AI and other digital services.

The countries also described resource deals. NVIDIA will provide GPUs to Japanese firms, including Sakura Internet and Softbank, while Google and Microsoft will contribute computational resources to Japanese companies developing AI foundation models.

Research partnerships

The US and Japan separately announced a $110 million academic research collaboration.

The joint initiative will help advance AI research and development and build upon earlier quantum computing partnerships and research.

Several universities are involved, including the University of Washington, the University of Tsukuba, Carnegie Mellon University, and Keio University. NVIDIA, Arm, Amazon, Microsoft, and a group of Japanese companies are funding the partnerships.

Other research collaborations feature NVIDIA and Japan’s National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), the US Department of Energy and Japan’s science ministry (MEXT), and Argonne National Laboratory and Japan’s RIKEN.

AI safety efforts

The agreement also discusses AI risk and harm reduction. The US and Japan intend to provide transparency to the public by labeling official government content and identifying content created or modified by artificial intelligence.

The two countries also plan to support AI Safety Institutes and collaborate on safety standards. The agreement described a “crosswalk” between Japan’s AI Guidelines for Business and the NIST AI Risk Management Framework, which will help the two countries develop compatible policy frameworks around AI.

The US also recently announced a similar agreement related to AI safety with the UK on April 2.

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