Correspondent, Commodities and Energy
James's Feed
Jul 18, 2014

One third of Japan firms say business hurt by China, South Korea tensions: poll

TOKYO (Reuters) – Diplomatic tensions with China and South Korea are hurting business for a third of Japanese firms, a Reuters poll found, with executives citing a drop-off in sales and difficulties in making deals work.

Under Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Japan has angered its neighbors with assertive foreign policies and looser restraints on the military, although tensions with China have not returned to levels seen in 2012 when territorial disputes prompted violent anti-Japan protests.

Jun 20, 2014

Japan Inc hopes to use corporate tax cut windfall on capex: Reuters poll

TOKYO (Reuters) – More than half of Japanese companies would consider investing the windfall from a promised corporate tax cut on operations at home, a Reuters poll showed, underscoring an increasingly bullish outlook for the economy.

Boosting domestic capital spending and ending deflation are central goals for Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who is keen to build upon success that bold monetary easing and hefty fiscal spending have had in weakening the yen and boosting stocks.

Jun 11, 2014

China to take more Iranian oil, boosting Asia’s total-sources

BEIJING/TOKYO, June 11 (Reuters) – China is set to take more
Iranian crude than it did before tough sanctions were put in
place in early 2012, as Asia’s biggest refiner Sinopec Corp buys
more oil from the Middle East nation, sources with direct
knowledge of China’s buying strategy said.

Western sanctions over the past few years had reduced Iran’s
crude shipments to less than half and crippled its economy by
choking the flow of petrodollars. Some of those measures were
eased following a breakthrough diplomatic deal last November in
return for Tehran curtailing its nuclear programme.

Jun 11, 2014

Japan to open residential power market to competition

TOKYO, June 11 (Reuters) – Japanese lawmakers voted
overwhelmingly on Wednesday to open up the residential
electricity market to full competition, the latest step in a
radical shakeup of the power industry in the wake of the
Fukushima nuclear disaster.

The change frees up a 7.5 trillion yen ($73 billion) market
to all companies from around 2016, allowing them to sell
electricity and other services to almost 77 million households
and 7.4 million small business, according to government figures.

Jun 7, 2014

Huge Russia-China gas deal still leaves door open to Japan

TOKYO, June 8 (Reuters) – For once, China looks to have done
Japan a favour.

In clinching a $400 billion deal last month to buy Russian
gas, China may end up helping out its old political and economic
rival in a way that matters hugely for Japan – energy security.

May 30, 2014

Asia’s Jan-Apr Iran oil intake tops volume allowed by nuclear deal

TOKYO, May 30 (Reuters) – Iran’s Asian buyers kept their oil
imports from the OPEC member in the first four months of 2014
above the level allowed by the deal that eases some Western
sanctions on Tehran in exchange for curbs to its nuclear
programme.

Under the deal signed in November and implemented in
January, Iran agreed to curtail its uranium enrichment programme
in return for the easing of some sanctions. As part of that
agreement, Tehran is supposed to keep its exports at around 1
million barrels per day (bpd) for the six months to July 20.

May 20, 2014

More Japan firms see tax-hike rebound by year-end: Reuters poll

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japanese companies increasingly expect to bounce back from a sales tax increase by the end of the year and are more willing to raise wages, a Reuters poll showed, adding to evidence that the hike is unlikely to derail a recovery in the world’s third-biggest economy.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s government hiked the sales tax to 8 percent from 5 percent last month in a bid to curb Japan’s runaway public debt. But the move has been controversial with some economists arguing it could dent the success achieved so far through aggressive monetary easing and hefty government spending.

May 11, 2014

Insight – How Japan’s Marubeni stumbled in China after rapid expansion

TOKYO/BEIJING (Reuters) – A year after spending $3.6 billion to buy grain trader Gavilon to expand in China, Japan’s Marubeni Corp has been shaken by defaults on soybean sales and faces an investigation into alleged tax evasion in the world’s top food consumer.

Its aggressive expansion, fuelled by offering flexible terms on soybean contracts and a willingness to deal with less-established customers, has been blamed for making it more vulnerable to buyers walking away from deals in a shaky market.

May 11, 2014

How Japan’s Marubeni stumbled in China after rapid expansion

TOKYO/BEIJING (Reuters) – A year after spending $3.6 billion to buy grain trader Gavilon to expand in China, Japan’s Marubeni Corp has been shaken by defaults on soybean sales and faces an investigation into alleged tax evasion in the world’s top food consumer.

Its aggressive expansion, fuelled by offering flexible terms on soybean contracts and a willingness to deal with less-established customers, has been blamed for making it more vulnerable to buyers walking away from deals in a shaky market.

May 11, 2014

How Japan’s Marubeni stumbled in China after rapid expansion

TOKYO/BEIJING, May 12 (Reuters) – A year after spending $3.6
billion to buy grain trader Gavilon to expand in China, Japan’s
Marubeni Corp has been shaken by defaults on soybean
sales and faces an investigation into alleged tax evasion in the
world’s top food consumer.

Its aggressive expansion, fuelled by offering flexible terms
on soybean contracts and a willingness to deal with
less-established customers, has been blamed for making it more
vulnerable to buyers walking away from deals in a shaky market.