JERA, the world's biggest liquefied natural gas(LNG) buyer, said on Wednesday that it has begun LNG bunkering business in central Japan through its joint venture with Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha, Toyota Tsusho and Nippon Yusen KK.
The move is aimed at providing an infrastructure needed for LNG-fuelled carriers and promoting a conversion of ships to LNG fuels to help achieve a target by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) to halve greenhouse gas emissions from shipping by 2050 compared to 2008, it said in a statement.
An LNG bunkering vessel, owned by the joint venture, supplied the fuel earlier this month to an LNG-fuelled pure car and truck carrier (PCTC) operated by Nippon Yusen that is under construction, marking the first ship-to-ship LNG bunkering in Japan, JERA said.
The number of LNG-fuelled ships in Japan is still small, but JERA expects it will grow amid a global drive toward decarbonization, a company spokesman said, though he added their bunkering service will be limited in the central region in Japan.
There are 174 LNG-fuelled ships in operation globally, with 226 more on order, according to DNV GL data.
JERA is a thermal power generation and fuel joint venture between Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings and Chubu Electric Power Co Inc.
(Reporting by Yuka Obayashi, editing by Louise Heavens)
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