Abu Dhabi’s ADNOC inks first fuel ammonia cooperation deal with Japan

By Rahul Vaimal, Associate Editor
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The UAE’s state-owned oil company and Japan agreed to cooperate on clean fuel technologies such as developing green ammonia to use as hydrogen fuel and on carbon recycling technologies.

The agreement follows the signing of a Memorandum of Cooperation between the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) and the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry of Japan as part of a virtual business mission at which the two nations discussed industrial cooperation, climate change, hydrogen and a post-pandemic economic recovery. 

During the meeting, ADNOC and Ice Futures Abu Dhabi (IFAD) signed an agreement with Japan’s Cosmo Oil and other end-users to explore the pricing opportunities of crude oil by using the new Ice Murban Crude Oil futures as a reference price.

IFAD plans to launch trading of the Murban Futures contract on March 29, 2021. IFAD will be the world’s first trading platform to include futures contracts based on Abu Dhabi’s grade of Murban crude, the benchmark grade in Asia’s fast-growing economies. Nine of the world’s leading energy companies and traders will join Ice and ADNOC as founding partners in IFAD.

Dr. Sultan Al Jaber
Dr. Sultan Al Jaber
UAE Minister of Industry & Advanced Technology

“We are very pleased to sign this important agreement with Japan that will allow both our countries to cooperate on fuel ammonia and carbon recycling technologies. This is another significant development for the UAE as we continue to explore the potential of new fuels that can help us produce more energy with fewer emissions. We are also pleased to collaborate with IFAD and our Japanese partners.”

Japan is ADNOC’s largest international importer of oil and gas products, with the country imports about 25 percent of its crude oil from the UAE. In recent years, ADNOC has strengthened its relations with Japanese entities. In 2020, it agreed on a deal with the country’s Agency for Natural Resources and Energy to store more than 8 million barrels of crude at facilities in Japan.

In 2019, ADNOC awarded exploration rights for an onshore oil block, to Japan’s INPEX and it increased the size of the company’s shares in several offshore concessions, from 2018 onwards.