Japanese Companies Launch Hydrogen Association to Build Leadership

hydrogen association Japan
Japan's K Line is among participants in the Hydrogen Association

Published Dec 8, 2020 5:20 PM by The Maritime Executive

Members of the Japanese maritime industry are joining with other leading companies across Japan in the formation of the Japan Hydrogen Association to promote global cooperation in
hydrogen-oriented activities as well as the establishment of a hydrogen supply chain. The effort is seen as a key step towards building Japan’s role in the development of hydrogen technology which is widely seen as one of the elements that will be used to address carbon emissions and global warming.

“We have decided to participate in the association because its initiative – implementation of hydrogen in the society and the encouragement to develop the hydrogen industry through collaboration with various stakeholders – is fully aligned with our principle to drive decarbonization of ourselves and the
Society,” said K Line in announcing its participation in the association.

In addition to K Line, a total of 87 companies have agreed to participate in the association, which was first announced in October. In the fall, a consortium of Japanese companies, includes Iwatani, Kansai Electric Power, Eneos, Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Kobe Steel, Toyota Motor, Toshiba, Mitsui, and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial, announced that they would be among the founding members.  The companies were forming a committee to draft the formation of the association which they said would be focused on working together to build global alliances and develop the hydrogen supply chain. 

The association announced a few broad objectives including considering proposals and the coordination of projects for the social implementation of hydrogen as well as funding projects. It will lead efforts to develop policies for the demand creation and deregulation of hydrogen as well as support education and research both in Japan and internationally.

Between now and February 2021, they plan to identify issues relating to the widespread use of hydrogen and gather information for policy proposals. They expect to make their first proposals to the Japanese government in February 2021.

Japan has been pursuing several initiatives in hydrogen seeking to establish itself as leading in the field. Last month, five Japanese companies, including Namura Shipbuilding, Kansai Electric Power, Iwatani, and the Development Bank of Japan said they would be joining with 
the Tokyo University of Marine Science and Technology, announcing a project to promote the commercial operation of hydrogen fuel cell ships. They say they would commence a feasibility study into hydrogen ships.