The draft is available in following URL in Japanese. (As always, no English publication.)
The summary of the cloud computing guidance is as follows. The guidance provide the definition and interpretation how METI consider cloud computing service under technology transfer export control.
1. The data storage service in cloud computing:
In case the server of cloud computing is located in foreign country and the data is stored outside of Japan, it is generally not subject to export control regulation as long as the transaction is limited to data storage secured by contract with service provider and user. However, if the contract of Japanese user and the foreign data storage provider include the possibility that foreign provider can inspect, acquire, or make use of the stored data, it may be subject to export control regulation, by being regarded as technology is transferred overseas.
2. SaaS (Software as a Service) scenario:
SaaS is a name of the service a user can make use of application software through Internet without downloading to personal devices. SaaS is generally considered as subject to export control regulation. Because this scenario is a service transaction to provide service a user can utilize the software function crossing international boarder. However, if the software is mass market software which is available to anybody without limitation, it is excluded from export control scope.
Comment: It is first time METI officially provided written guidance to cloud computing. Industries in Japan have been awaiting this for years and in the past, they had issued opinion letters under the name of some industry associations.
Above 1 (data storage part) mostly reflect industry's opinion, and seems to be reasonable interpretation. However above 2 (Saas part) is contrary to industry's opinion. Actually industries have requested SaaS should not be treated as subject to export control, because SaaS is not technology transfer but merely data processing. Also it is "illogical jump" to consider SaaS is transfer of software itself.
As it is now public comment stage, I believe many negative comments will come especially in SaaS part.