Air Liquide Japan, ITOCHU Corporation and ITOCHU ENEX Co., Ltd (collectively, ITOCHU) have signed a memorandum of understanding to collaborate on the development of hydrogen mobility markets in Japan.
Air Liquide Japan and ITOCHU will initially focus on the development of the hydrogen retail infrastructure in Japan, both for passenger and commercial vehicles (trucks, buses). The objective is to expand this retail infrastructure and develop a competitive hydrogen supply offer for passenger and commercial end-users, in collaboration with public authorities, allowing a rapid ramp-up of hydrogen mobility in Japan. The companies will investigate more globally the opportunities to scale up the hydrogen supply chain in support of the Japan Government hydrogen roadmap, with both domestic production and low-carbon hydrogen imports.
This collaboration will leverage the expertise and technologies of Air Liquide across the hydrogen supply chain and the large footprint of ITOCHU across multiple energy sectors, from fuel retail business to renewable energy production plants.
The announcement of this collaboration comes after the recent announcement by the Japanese Government on the ‘green growth strategy’ plan to reach carbon neutrality by 2050, under which hydrogen is expected to play a key role. Under this plan, the Japanese government will ban the sales of vehicles which completely run on fossil fuels after 2035, pushing for the transportation sector to make a shift toward battery electric and fuel cell electric vehicles.
Air Liquide is one of the international major gas companies. It co-chairs the Hydrogen Council, and also has an established position as a global leader in promoting hydrogen utilization. Air Liquide Japan was established in 1907 in Japan, and supplies industrial gas and related equipment, while providing its services to various industries.
François Abrial, Member of the Air Liquide Group’s Executive Committee supervising Asia Pacific, said: “The fight against climate change is at the heart of Air Liquide 's strategy. Hydrogen is projected to play a key role in supporting energy transition and the emergence of a carbon-neutral society. With this collaboration, we seek to jointly accelerate the development of Hydrogen mobility markets in Japan, leveraging our complementary technology portfolios and know-how across the entire hydrogen value chain.”