Sunday, June 24, 2018

Japan News

JERA imports first US LNG into Japan

Courtesy JERA

JERA Co., Inc. announced that an LNG cargo produced in the contiguous United States (“US LNG”) has arrived at Joetsu LNG Terminal of Chubu Electric Power Company today. This is the first import of US LNG into Japan. JERA and Cheniere Marketing International, LLP have entered into a sale and purchase agreement for the cargo, which was loaded onto the LNG vessel Oak Spirit at Sabine Pass LNG Terminal in Louisiana, operated by Cheniere Energy Partners, L.P. on 7 December 2016. The voyage to Japan via the Panama Canal took about one month.

JERA Imports Japan's First Liquefied Shale Gas Cargo from U.S.

File Image: an LNG carrier (CREDIT: Parker Bestobell)

Japan's JERA Co said on Friday it imported the country's first liquefied shale gas cargo from the United States as part of efforts to diversify its supply. This also marks Japan's first import of liquefied natural gas (LNG) produced in the contiguous United States. Japan previously had imported U.S. LNG only from Alaska. JERA, a fuel joint venture between Tokyo Electric Power and Chubu Electric Power, said the vessel Oak Spirit, which passed through the Panama Canal, arrived at Chubu Electric's Joetsu LNG terminal facing the Sea of Japan on Friday.

Australia, Japan Enact Rules for Shipping Liquid Hydrogen

Australia and Japan signed a memorandum at the headquarters of the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) in Canberra which will allow liquid hydrogen to be shipped in bulk for the first time. Ship containment systems are being developed in Japan that will be capable of safely transporting liquid hydrogen in bulk from Australia to Japan as part of a pilot project scheduled to commence in 2020. Bulk gas cargoes are carried under the International Code…

Japan Pays Dearly for U.S. Shale Cargoes

File Image (CREDIT: GAC)

Japan in January paid nearly twice as much for liquefied natural gas (LNG) derived from U.S. shale gas as it did for its cheapest imports, official trade data showed on Friday. Shale gas from the United States had been touted as a panacea to Japan's energy crisis after the Fukushima nuclear disaster nearly six years ago. The first supplies arrived in Japan last month to much fanfare but the revelation of its higher cost would seem to undermine the initial euphoria. Japan, the world's biggest importer of LNG, received 211,237 tonnes of U.S.

Japan Eyes LNG Projects in Russian Arctic

Russian Energy Minister said on Wednesday Japan was interested in taking part in projects to produce liquefied natural gas in the Arctic. "Japan today shows its interest in increasing cooperation in the Arctic, including construction of a plant to produce liquefied natural gas," Novak said in comments shown on Rossiya-24 TV station. He didn't specify what was the project that Japan was interested in. Russian largest non-state gas producer Novatek said earlier it planned to build new facilities to produce LNG in the Arctic.

Japan Spot LNG Contract Price at 5-Month Low

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / Fotmart)

Prices for liquefied natural gas (LNG) spot cargoes for Japan, the world's top buyer, fell to a five-month low in March from a two-year high the month before, official data showed on Tuesday. The average price of spot LNG contracted last month was $6.20 per million British thermal units, according to monthly data from the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI), down $2.30 from the previous month and the lowest since last October. That was broadly in line with the wider Asian benchmark for last month due to tepid demand for the cleaner fuel…

Japan Steelmakers Scramble for Coking Coal

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Lukasc Z) )

Japanese steelmakers have bought coking coal from the United States, Canada and China to replace supply lost after a cyclone closed rail links in Australia, their biggest supplier, industry and trader sources said. Still, the Japanese buyers are paying nearly double the $150 a tonnes price that they were discussing with sellers for second-quarter supply before the supply disruption. The supply talks are now on hold and prices will likely stay high until full volumes start flowing again.

Norway races Australia for Japan's Hydrogen Business

Norway may provide cleanly produced hydrogen to Japan; but Australia hopes to export the fuel extracted from brown coal. Norway and Australia are racing each other to show they can supply Japan with hydrogen, hoping to fulfil its ambition to become the first nation significantly fuelled by the super-clean energy source. While Australia has planned to derive liquid hydrogen from brown coal for some time, Norway could steal a march if a pilot project producing the fuel using renewable energy - a climate-friendly method more in keeping with Japan's aims - is cheaper.

Japan to Buy up to 50,500 T LPG for National Stockpile

State-run Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corp (JOGMEC) has issued a tender to buy 50,000 to 50,500 tonnes of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) for national stockpile. The tender was in line with expectations. Reuters reported in May that Japan will likely conduct a tender in the autumn to buy up to 100,000 tonnes of LPG for national stockpiles. JOGMEC is seeking propane for a stockpiling base in Kurashiki in the country's west for delivery by Nov. 15, a tender document showed. The tender will be held on Aug. 30, with offers to be evaluated the same day.

Japan's Itochu Attacked by short-seller Glaucus

Glaucus questions how Itochu's classifies some investments. Japan's Itochu Corp became the target of short-seller Glaucus Research Group on Wednesday with a report criticising the trading company's accounting practices, sending its shares tumbling as much as 10 percent. The report highlighted Itochu's investments in a Colombian coal mining joint venture and China's CITIC Ltd, arguing that the Japanese firm had classified its investments in a way that inflated profits.

Japan Slams China Over Maritime Issues

Photo: U.S.-China Perception Monitor

Japan has accused China of being assertive over maritime issues, taking actions that effectively amount to a "fait accompli", reports Strait Times. In its 484-page annual defence white paper on Tuesday (Aug 2), the defence ministry said the aggressive actions by China could "cause unintended consequences", referring to past incidents including one where a China naval frigate entered Japan's contiguous zone this year, near a crop of islets in the East China Sea that has been claimed by both countries.

Saudi Arabia to Discuss Energy Cooperation with China, Japan

Saudi Arabia, the world's top oil exporter, plans to discuss energy cooperation agreements with China and Japan, the Saudi cabinet said on Monday. "The cabinet has approved to delegate a number of ministers to discuss with the Chinese side the following projects: a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to cooperate in the energy sector; an initial cooperation memorandum in the field of crude storage," a cabinet statement on state news agency SPA said. Discussions with Japan for an MOU for cooperating in the energy sector were also approved by the cabinet, SPA said.

Saudi Aramco, Japan to expand Okinawa Crude Storage Deal

Storage capacity to be expanded by about 2 million barrels. Saudi Aramco and the Japanese government are set to agree on a roughly 2 million barrel expansion of crude storage capacity in Okinawa, used by the state-run firm to store oil, Saudi Aramco CEO Amin Nasser said on Thursday. Under an agreement with Tokyo, Saudi Aramco and Abu Dhabi National Oil Co (ADNOC) each store up to 1 million kilolitres (6.3 million barrels) of crude oil in Okinawa, southwest of mainland Japan.

Japan Protests over Signs of Renewed Chinese Gas Exploration

Japan has protested to China over signs it is pressing ahead with maritime gas exploration in the East China Sea despite Tokyo's repeated requests to stop, Japan's top government spokesman said on Wednesday. The exploration platforms are on the Chinese side of the median line between the two countries, but Japan accuses China of ignoring a 2008 agreement to maintain cooperation on resources development in an area where no official border has been drawn.

Japan Restarts Reactor as Return to Nuclear Gathers Pace

Japan's Kyushu Electric Power Co on Friday said it restarted a reactor at its Genkai plant, the fifth nuclear power station in the country to get cleared under new safety regulations imposed after the Fukushima disaster. The move signals that Japan's return to nuclear power - criticized by some as too slow but still opposed by a majority in opinion polls - is gathering pace. The country may have as many as eight reactors operating by early June, representing 20 percent of available units.

Japan Commodity Exchange Halts as Heavy Trading Overwhelms

The Tokyo Commodity Exchange (TOCOM) has twice halted trading since early Thursday morning, with at least one of the interruptions caused by heavy trading orders following Donald Trump's surprise U.S. presidential election victory. The exchange - which trades gold, crude oil and rubber, among other commodities - halted night trading more than two hours earlier than usual at 3:15 a.m. Japan time (1815 GMT Wednesday), after orders surged and computers almost reached maximum processing capacity, it said. It then stopped trading between 10:00 a.m.

Japan Oct Spot LNG Price Rises to 8-Month High

File image: An LNG carrier underway (CREDIT: MISC)

Prices for liquefied natural gas (LNG) spot cargoes for Japan, the world's top buyer, rose in October to an eight-month high, official data showed on Thursday. The average price of spot LNG contracted last month was $6.10 per million British thermal units, up from $5.70 in September, monthly data by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) showed. Asian LNG prices <LNG-AS> extended gains in October, hitting $6.95 per mmBtu by the end of the month, as expectations of strong winter demand from South Korea added to appetite from India and Taiwan.

Japan to Supply India with Nuclear Power Equipment, Technology

Japan and India signed a civilian nuclear accord on Friday, opening the door for Tokyo to supply New Delhi with fuel, equipment and technology for nuclear power production, as India looks to atomic energy to sustain its rapid economic growth. It was the first time Japan, the only country to have suffered a nuclear attack, had concluded such a pact with a country that is not a signatory to the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty (NPT). "Today's signing ...

Japan, Saudi Aramco extend Okinawa Crude Storage Deal

file image: AdobeStock 119535276

State-run Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corp (JOGMEC) said it signed a contract with the world's top exporter Saudi Aramco on Wednesday to extend a crude oil storage deal on the island of Okinawa by three years. Under the agreement, Saudi Aramco can store up to 1 million kilolitres (6.3 million barrels) of crude oil on the island southwest of mainland Japan for the next three years, JOGMEC said in a statement. The volumes are unchanged from the previous three-year deal, which is expiring this month.

Japan: An LNG Bunkering Hub?

(Photo courtesy Intrernational Transport Forum)

New study examines Japanese government strategy for creating infrastructure for environmentally-friendly ship fuel.A new report by the Intrernational Transport Forum at the OECD assesses Japan’s ambition to become an international bunkering hub for liquefied natural gas (LNG).The Japanese government is working to position the nation as a LNG bunkering hub as it expects the fuel's significance in shipping to grow.Japan is already the world’s largest importer of LNG by a large margin.