Top Chinese and Japanese officials in charge of energy affairs met yesterday to boost their partnership, with big oil companies from the two sides signing pacts on oil and gas cooperation.
Minister of the National Development and Reform Commission Ma Kai discussed in detail the ways to promote energy-saving business with Japanese Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Akira Amari.
The first energy policy dialogue between the two nations came a day after they adopted a document on bilateral energy cooperation.
Before their talks, the two ministers attended the opening session of an energy forum for leaders from Japanese and Chinese oil, gas, electricity and other energy-related companies at a Tokyo hotel.
It is meaningful for the two major energy-consuming countries to cooperate, Ma said.
China and Japan accounted for one-fifth of the world's total energy consumption in 2005.
"I'm confident that our cooperation to ensure the stability of the international energy market will be beneficial not only to the two countries, but also to the Asia-Pacific region and the entire world," he said.
Business executives from 130 Japanese and 50 Chinese companies took part in the energy forum and discussed cooperation in four working groups on electricity, oil and natural gas, coal, and new and renewable energy.
Japan's top refiner Nippon Oil Corp and second largest trading house Mitsui & Co strengthened their bonds with China's State oil giants in broad pacts that could lead to joint development of oil and gas.
Nippon Oil and Asia's biggest oil producer China National Petroleum Corp (CNPC) signed an accord for long-term cooperation, including overseas oil and natural gas resources development at the Japan-China energy seminar.
Among other energy deals, Mitsui & Co's UK unit signed an accord on spot trading of liquefied natural gas (LNG) with CNOOC, the leader in China's nascent LNG industry.
Japan's Sumitomo Corp, Kyushu Electric Power Co and China Datang Corp have already agreed to cooperate to develop renewable energy sources.
Also, the Institute of Energy Economics of Japan and the Energy Research Institute of the National Development and Reform Commission of China signed a memorandum for a joint study on energy saving policies.
(China Daily April 13, 2007)