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Japan May Offer Loans to Fund Clean-Coal Power Plants

June 17, 2009 at 10:27 by Andriy Moraru

Japan plans to offer loans to power producers in the U.S. and Australia that buy so-called clean coal generators from Japanese manufacturers, according to a government document obtained by Bloomberg News.

Funding from state-owned Japan Bank for International Cooperation would help drive sales of the plants that cost about $3.1 billion apiece, said a senior trade ministry official involved in producing the 113-page draft plan, due to be released today. The ministry said in an e-mail it will brief the media on a report about clean coal at 4:30 p.m. in Tokyo.

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. and Hitachi Ltd. compete with General Electric Co. and Germany’s Siemens AG to supply plants that convert coal into gas before generating power, making it easier to trap carbon-dioxide emissions. Japan wants to benefit from new demand for clean energy after world leaders including U.S. President Barack Obama pledged to back technologies that reduce gases blamed for global warming.

“The government’s marketing campaign will be a big plus for Mitsubishi Heavy in the competition to capture the market for ‘green technology,’” said Futoshi Usui, a Tokyo-based analyst at Credit Suisse, who rates the stock “outperform”.

From Bloomberg News.

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