TOKYO: Saudi Arabia and Japan signed a memorandum of cooperation in the fields of the circular carbon economy, carbon recycling, clean hydrogen and fuel ammonia, the Kingdom’s energy ministry announced on Sunday.
The deal was signed at the first ministerial meeting of the Saudi-Japanese Ministerial Dialogue for Energy in the capital, Riyadh, in the presence of Saudi Energy Minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman and Japanese Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Yasutoshi Nishimura.
Nishimura is visiting Saudi Arabia and Oman for discussions on the supply and stabilization of oil and liquefied natural gas.
“We will encourage Saudi Arabia and Oman to stabilize the international crude oil market and secure a stable supply of LNG,” Nishimura said in a Twitter post. “We will also strengthen cooperation in areas such as hydrogen and ammonia.”
Japanese media reported that with China trying to draw closer to Arab countries, Japan plans to strengthen relations with Middle East countries in such areas as decarbonization and infrastructure, as well as the stable procurement of energy.
The Ministry of Investment on Sunday will organize the Saudi-Japanese Investment Forum, in the presence of Minister of Investment Khalid Al-Falih and Nishimura to strengthen investment relations between the two countries in all fields.
The forum will review investment opportunities in priority sectors, in addition to discussion sessions on a number of topics, with the participation of representatives of government agencies, the private sector, and major Saudi and Japanese companies.
The forum will include bilateral meetings between major companies and representatives of the private sector from both sides.
Nishimura will be in Saudi Arabia, Japan’s largest importer of crude oil, until Monday and will then go to Oman, a supplier of LNG, on Tuesday.
Nishimura will hold talks with ministers in charge of energy in Saudi Arabia and call for cooperation in stabilizing crude oil prices. He will also discuss hydrogen and ammonia projects.
Japan depends on the Gulf countries for most of its crude oil and natural gas needs, and relations with Arab countries are crucial for the Japanese economy.
After visiting the Middle East, Nishimura will head to Malaysia for discussions on ensuring a stable supply of LNG, the Asia Zero Emission Community Initiative, the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework, and other matters following the recent change of government there.