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Japan May Set Higher Tariff for Offshore Wind Power, METI Says

Japan may set an above-market rate for offshore wind power to encourage investment.

Six experts will study the costs and plan to make a proposal by year-end, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry said in a statement today.

Japan began an incentive program for clean energy such as geothermal, solar and wind in July 2012. The group’s proposal will be presented to a committee in charge of setting tariffs for clean energy every year.

Currently the tariff for wind power, which doesn’t differentiate between onshore and offshore projects, is set at 23.1 yen (24 cents) for 20 years. There have been calls for a separate price for offshore wind, which is usually more costly.

The government is gearing up to increase offshore wind capacity and support projects that use both floating and fixed-bottom turbines. The study group will focus on the fixed-bottom type as there are now enough pilot projects and overseas examples to study, according to the statement.

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