Sojitz plans to use leftover woody material from Vietnamese factories to make biomass fuel.
TOKYO -- Japan's general trading companies are expanding supplies of fuel for biomass power plants to meet an expected surge in demand from facilities set to start up in 2017 and 2018, a development encouraged by the country's feed-in-tariff system.
Sojitz will begin production as early as 2018 of fuel made from woody biomass in Vietnam in partnership with state-run Vietnam Forest, also known as Vinafor. The duo agreed this month to conduct a feasibility study and aim to spend a year hammering out specific plans.
Sojitz and Vinafor jointly run four production bases for papermaking materials in Vietnam. At these sites, they plan to build facilities that use bark and other leftover plant matter to produce fuel. Sojitz is targeting annual shipments of 1 million tons of fuel to Japan in the medium to long term -- enough to power a 200,000kW plant for a year.