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BMI View: While it will continue to remain a global refining powerhouse, aggressive cutbacks in refining
capacity and a gradual shift away from oil-based fuels will weigh on Japan's refined fuels exports in the
long run. Japan will remain the largest LNG buyer in the world through to 2025, though the risk of an LNG
oversupply domestically is pertinent due to the rise of alternative energy sources such as nuclear, coal and
renewables energy, which will erode gas' share in the total power mix and drag on overall demand.
Latest Updates And Key Forecasts
? Despite boasting world-class capability, the Japanese refining sector is vulnerable to further consolidation
and capacity cuts as the government seeks to reduce overcapacity and improve the sector's efficiency.
Mergers of the country's largest refiners are imminent, with JX Holdings and TonenGeneral expected to
merge by April 2017, while Idemitsu Kosan and Showa Shell are set to follow likewise between
October 2016 and April 2017.
? Difficulties with restarting Japan's currently shut nuclear reactors will see the country increasingly rely on
coal and renewables energy, eroding LNG share in the total power mix. In July 2016, the Otsu district
court rejected Kansai Electric's rejection of a March injunction which ordered the firm to shut down its
No.3 and No.4 nuclear reactors at its Takahama plant.
? The Japanese Fair Trade Commission (FTC) has launched an investigation to determine whether
destination clauses contained within existing long-term LNG contracts with international suppliers violate
domestic competition laws. If found so, it could see Japan step-up efforts to renegotiate existing contract
? Japan will remain a major exporter of various light-to-middle distillates throughout our forecast period to
2025, though large import requirement for LPG and petrochemicals will see it remain a net importer of