The CPP has been authorized to adopt the complementary rules to ensure a higher level of protection for international data transfers. However, these measures will not be extended to Japanese citizens. Wouldn`t this reverse discrimination be contrary to “substantially equivalent” protection under the RGPD? Or should it be considered a purely internal situation and Japan`s own choice? These are questions that the European Court of Justice (ECJ) can interpret further. Nevertheless, it is difficult to resist the temptation to question the “adequacy” that discriminates against one`s own nationals. In September 2018, japan`s Commission for the Protection of Personal Data (PPC) adopted a series of complementary provisions aimed at aligning APPLICATIONI with the RGPD and strengthening the protection of sensitive information, the exercise of individual rights and the conditions under which EU data can be transferred from Japan to third countries. These additional rules, which would only be implemented in the event of a positive adequacy decision, apply exclusively to companies that import data from the EU and are enforceable by the PPC and Japanese courts. In view of the increasing digitisation of the global economy, the Commission`s decision to transmit personal data to Japan has added a missing element to the existing legal framework for EU-Japan relations, marked by the entry into force of an Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) in February 2019. This trade agreement will inevitably lead to an increase in the flow of data, including personal data. Therefore, the non-presentation would have deprived the issue of the transfer of personal data of its content. In January 2019, the European Commission adopted its first adequacy decision since the RGPD came into force. The adequacy decision on Japan allows for the transmission of personal data from the European Economic Area (EEA) to Japan without the need for additional safeguards. Due to the adequacy decision and the complementary rules, the genomic and health data of European and Japanese participants can flow freely between the EU and Japan without additional data protection specifications or contractual guarantees.
However, since the scheme applies only to the private sector, the transfer of personal data between public bodies such as local or local governments is excluded. In addition, the scope of the decision includes sectoral exclusions: universities that process personal data for university studies fall into this category. On 23 January 2019, the European Commission (Commission) adopted with immediate effect its adequacy decision on Japan (ad hoc decision). The adequacy decision allows the transfer of personal data without additional safeguards between the EU and Japan, creating “the largest area of safe data flow in the world”. According to the RGPD, a adequacy decision is one of the instruments available to ensure the secure transfer of personal data from the EU to third countries. The adequacy of the level of protection should be assessed in the terms of the legal order of a third country and the safeguards against the authorities` access to personal data. Moreover, adequacy cannot be achieved without the individuals concerned being able to assert their rights and in the absence of independent supervisory authorities guaranteeing compliance with data protection principles. Signed by European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and European Council President Donald Tusk and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, the EPA is already in place for ratification by the European Parliament and the Japanese parliament.