Disseminating More Japanese Energy-Saving Technologies in the World
Supporting Exports of Cutting-Edge Technologies in the World with Expertise and Financing
Japanese advanced energy-saving technologies are a key to addressing global environmental issues, while serving as a significant weapon of Japanese firms for expanding their scope of overseas business. This section reports on JBIC efforts to provide support in financing and knowledge for disseminating Japanese energy-saving technologies across the world.
Japan as the Country with the Highest Energy Efficiency in the World
Comparison of Energy Efficiency among Notable Countries and Regions:
The measure is CO2 equivalent tons required to produce US$1 million worth of GDP, with the Japanese value normalized to be one (in 2004).
Source: Institute of Energy Economics, Japan
Japanese industry is the world's leader in energy efficiency. This is clear when comparing the levels of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, a byproduct of burning fossil fuels causing global warming, with other countries.
If the level of CO2 to produce a given amount of GDP in Japan is normalized to be one, comparable figures in the United States, the European Union (EU) and China are respectively 2.1, 1.7 and 10.8. This indicates that Japan has built an economy that makes the most efficient use of energy.
This is the end-result of arduous industry efforts to improve energy efficiency, through the processes carried out by Japan-a major resource importer having an energy-sufficiency rate of less than 5%-in order to pull through the two oil shocks which have occurred in the past.
Meanwhile, demand for energy is fast growing in developing countries, with China and India in particular making remarkable progress in economic development and consuming massive amounts of energy. If newly emerging economies such as China and India continue to make inefficient use of huge volumes of fossil fuels as the present industrialized countries have done in the past, they are likely to engender more adverse environmental impacts, including further global warming and widespread energy shortages.
Disseminating Japanese energy-saving technologies in the world will mitigate impacts on the global environment and help to stabilize energy resource markets. Furthermore, exporting advanced technologies produces a business opportunity for Japanese industry. JBIC does not spare its efforts to provide knowledge assistance, in addition to financial support, to propagate Japan's strengths in the world.
Exporting Japanese Energy-Saving Technologies
Here is a concrete example of a project supported by JBIC lending. In fact, the project is located far away from Asia. It is in Ukraine, a country in transition to a market-based economic system. Its steel industry, the country's major industry, urgently requires rehabilitation of the existing facilities. In 2007, a project using surplus gas for generating the portion of the power used in the steel plant was implemented in Ekoenergiya, a subsidiary of the Industrial Union of Donbass (IUD), the country's leading steel holding company. In this project, a gas-turbine combined-cycle power generation facility manufactured by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries was installed.
There are also a good prospects that Japanese firms might be able to acquire GHG emission credits under the Kyoto Mechanisms through this power generation project.
JBIC thus provided a loan in co-financing with private financial institutions for this project. This is the first loan JBIC offered to a Ukrainian firm solely based on its creditworthiness. The energy-saving technology of Japanese manufactures is thus expected to lead to a more efficient use of energy by Ekoenergiya and help improve the environment in Ukraine. Furthermore, it will contribute to economic growth in the country, which is pursuing the establishment of a market-based economy, while enabling Japanese firms to undertake a business deal that spreads energy-saving technology to the world. In this way, the financial cooperation JBIC has provided has helped strengthen bilateral ties between Japan and Ukraine, while giving impetus to the business development of the Japanese industry. This is one of the roles JBIC performs.
Knowledge sharing for Saving Energy
If Japanese energy-saving technologies and knowhow are to prevail in the world, it is crucial to increase business match-making opportunities for their users and providers, while vigorously disseminating information on available technologies and knowhow.
JBIC's Environmental Finance Engineering Division (EFED) is supporting the transfer of energy-saving technologies and knowhow to foreign governments and firms, overseas environment improvement projects, and the spread of Japanese energy-saving and alternative energy technologies. Specifically, it is helping with the financial aspects of increasing energy efficiency of power facilities, developing biofuels, and utilizing higher energy/fuel efficient home appliances and automobiles.
JBIC also held a series of "CO2 Caravan" seminars at home and abroad where information and advice were provided on environmental business in the world.