Japan to provide oil refining technology to Kuwait

Jul 12, 2004 02:00 AM

Japan aims to provide technological support for oil refining to Kuwait, which is planning to construct a fourth oil refinery in the 2009-2010 period, a senior Japanese government official said.
Japan's Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Shoichi Nakagawa told Kuwaiti Oil Minister Sheikh Ahmad al-Fahd al-Sabah the technological support will be one of the ways to further develop economic ties between the two nations, Hirofumi Katase, director of the petroleum and natural gas division under the trade ministry, said after bilateral talks between Nakagawa and al-Sabah.

The two ministers also agreed that their nations should further cooperate in other sectors besides oil, such as environment-related business, including water purification system development, Katase said.
Earlier, al-Sabah unveiled plans to construct a fourth oil refinery at an estimated cost of $ 3.5 bn, with a capacity to process more than 400,000 bpd of crude oil. On recent high oil prices, Nakagawa was quoted as saying during the talks that the Japanese government will continue monitoring the prices, suggesting they could have a negative impact on global economic growth. The front-month crude futures contract is trading close to $ 40 a barrel in Access electronic trade on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Al-Sabah told Nakagawa that Kuwait could export more crude to Japanese refiners if needed, without elaborating on the specific volumes.
In the fiscal year ended March, Japan imported 18.20 mm kiloliters or 313,676 bpd of crude from Kuwait, accounting for 7.4 % of its overall crude imports, which totalled 244.85 mm kl or 4.22 mm bpd.

Source: Dow Jones
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