Aiming to be Asian standard / Govt seeks to boost economy through Japanese GPS satellite system
Japan's plan to launch six or seven positioning satellites is a 200 billion yen project meant to boost the Japanese economy through its joint implementation by both the public and private sectors. Scheduled to include satellites of the same type as the recently launched quasi-zenith satellite Michibiki, the network's high accuracy also will help Japanese companies expand overseas if the system becomes the standard infrastructure for the Asia-Pacific region.
By combining this nation's quasi-zenith satellites and the United States' global positioning system (GPS) satellites, the margin of error in measuring position will be reduced from the current 10 meters to one meter or less.The government needs to revise the law regarding private finance initiative (PFI) as quickly as possible and launch the satellites on schedule from 2014. The PFI method was chosen for production and launch of the satellites because the government is currently in severe fiscal straits.
China, however, has already launched eight positioning satellites in Asia. If the launch of Japanese satellites is delayed, China's system may become the industry standard in Asia, even if Japan's is more accurate.
Source: Daily Yomiuri Online