Hirofumi Katase currently serves I-Pulse as Executive Vice Chairman, Director General of Industrial Science and Technology, and a member of the Board of Directors. Mr. Katase also is President and Chief Executive Officer of I-Pulse Japan, I-Pulse’s operating subsidiary in Japan.
He most recently served as Japan’s Vice Minister for International Affairs at the Ministry of the Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) since June 2016. He held numerous management positions in trade, energy and industrial policy at METI since joining in 1982. During his time at METI, Mr. Katase served in multiple Director General positions, including for the Industrial Science and Technology Policy Bureau, Environment Bureau and Trade Policy Bureau, where he led efforts that contributed to the signing of the Trans-Pacific Partnership, among other international agreements.
He previously was Deputy Secretary-General of the Secretariat of Strategic Headquarters for Space Policy at the Cabinet Office, where he helped establish the Office of National Space Policy – the headquarters responsible for Japan’s development and maintenance of space policy and infrastructure. He also was Director of the Oil and Natural Gas division at METI, where he led Japan’s upstream hydrocarbon policy for four years. Also at METI, he was Director of the Aerospace and Defense Industry division where he worked on launching the Mitsubishi Regional Jet (MRJ) program and cultivated international partnerships for the development of aircraft and aircraft engines.
Mr. Katase earned a Bachelor’s degree in law from the University of Tokyo and a Master’s degree in applied economics from the University of Michigan.