Renewal energy

If your product were consuming much electricity, it would be not the best time to do business in Japan now.

Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant accident forced to Japan to change its energy policy. Japan had depended on nuclear power plant heavily before the accident. Nuclear Capacity Factor as of fiscal year 2009 was 65.7% 1. As of October 2013, there is no working nuclear plant because of public criticism. Thermal power plants take the place of it and it is costly. Japanese electricity cost has been high among the OECD countries and getting even higher. (20-24 cents in 2009 and 26 cents in 2011 2) People pay attention to renewal energy to reduce carbon dioxide in order to stop global warming but Japan choose nuclear power because of geological and meteorological reason. Now the mood is "safety is the highest priority".

Japanese electric power source 2009-2012

According to research report by Fuji Keizai Ltd. 3, total market size of photovoltaic products will grow to 2.3 trillion yen by 2020 from 0.9 trillion yen in 2012. As of installation base, it is estimated to increase to 7,050MW in 2013 from 2,050MW in 2012. The report said "FIT (Feed-in Tariff), introduced July 2012, pushed industrial sector.".

Japanese government is helping in many ways. For example, the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries approved land usage change for solar cells structures. Farmers can build it in a farm without loosing farm land recognition with tax benefit if they don't reduce production by 20%.

Renewal energy, defined by Japanese law, consists of photovoltaic, wind, hydraulic, geo-thermal, solar-thermal, other thermal and biomass. Among them, photovoltaic is the fastest growing sector because of FIT and low entry barriers. Even private houses can install solar cells.

Realizing clean and economical energy is indeed one of 4 themes in the Strategic Market Creation Plan of Abe cabinet. Japan try to get affordable energy as well as economic growth.

References

1. Electricity Generated and Purchased in FY2009 (Bulletin), the Federation of Electric Power Companies of Japan
2. Average electricity prices around the world: $/kWh, Shrink That Footprint Ltd
   Global Electricity Prices, EnergyUseCalculator.com
3. Photovoltaic market world wide, Fuji Keizai Ltd.

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