Japan’s Justice Ministry has started a trial of using artificial intelligence to translate Japanese laws into English.
The move is in response to growing demand from overseas and within Japan to consult laws and regulations in English when investing in Japanese firms and real estate.
The ministry began the experimental introduction of AI aimed at reducing the time required for translation.
The ministry has produced English translations of Japanese laws since 2009. But it takes about two and a half years on average before the English version of a law is released.
That’s because the translation work has been done by officials who also have other duties, plus their individual abilities can vary.
The ministry aims to shorten the time needed for translations to about a year.
If the trial uncovers no issues, the ministry hopes to fully introduce AI next April.
Justice Minister Koizumi Ryuji said he hopes AI will improve translation work that takes too long as artificial intelligence is becoming increasingly user-friendly.