Inaugural Discussions on Renewable Energy Opportunities in the U.S. and Japan

December 14, 2012

Officials from the U.S. Department of Commerce and the U.S. Department of Energy co-hosted the inaugural U.S.-Japan Renewable Energy Policy Business Roundtable with Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) in Tokyo on Dec. 3. This first ever bilateral roundtable focused on "New Opportunities for Renewable Energy in Japan and the United States."

For the first time in this series of discussions, small and medium-size U.S. renewable energy businesses in the U.S. and Japan also took part in the discussions. Their business-oriented assessment of recent developments such as Japan's Feed-in-Tariff regime for electricity produced from renewable energy sources were welcomed by the governmental authorities from both countries.

Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary for Manufacturing for the U.S. Department of Commerce, Ms. Maureen Smith, Deputy Assistant Secretary in the Office of Policy and International Affairs for the U.S. Department of Energy, Ms. Phyllis Yoshida, and METI Director-General, Energy Conservation and Renewable Energy Department, Agency for Natural Resources and Energy, Mr. Hiroaki Niihara, jointly chaired the public-private roundtable discussions that focused on renewable energy and smart grid developments in Japan and the United States.

Following the roundtable meetings, the U.S. Government and private sector participants traveled to the Tohoku region where they met with prefectural government representatives in Fukushima and Miyagi prefectures. The delegation visited renewable energy and smart grid projects in Tohoku in order to see and hear first-hand the results of Japan's green energy and smart grid policies.

The U.S. Government remains committed to continuing this collaborative and practical engagement through future business roundtables, as well as through the U.S.-Japan Clean Energy Policy dialogue with the Government of Japan.