Japan: Biofuels Annual

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Japan’s annual biofuel target of 500 million liters (crude oil equivalent) for the transport sector was reached on time in 2017 and continues unchanged this year. To achieve the biofuel target which remains unchanged through 2022, Japan mostly imports bio-Ethyl Tert-Butyl Ether (ETBE), but a small portion of the requirement is covered by domestic ETBE produced from imported bioethanol. Following a 2018 revision of environmental standards for bioethanol, Japan began importing ETBE made from U.S. corn ethanol for the first time in July 2019, but its ethanol blend rate remains among the lowest of countries with a fuel ethanol program. A number of very small-scale biodiesel plants still operate but the market is virtually non-existent and has no growth prospects. Japan’s market for wood pellets is expanding rapidly as biomass and co-fired power plants take advantage of feed-in tariffs. Policy-driven market opportunity for foreign wood pellet suppliers is exceptional, but U.S. suppliers remain on the margin.

Japan: Biofuels Annual