The gas industry in Japan

Taki, Hideo

The structure of the Japanese gas industry is characterized by the large number of distribution companies involved. As a result of limited reserves and geographical constraints, the gas production and transmission sectors have not been significantly developed. Following deregulation in the US and UK, the process of liberalization began in the Japanese gas market in March 1995. As a result the gas supply market to large-volume users -- those with minimum annual consumption of 2 million cubic meters- was liberalized. To promote management efficiency, a new gas rate system based on existing total-cost analysis was introduced and guidelines for pipeline access were also published. Amendments to the Electricity Industry Law have resulted in partial liberalization of the wholesale electricity market, creating new opportunities for gas companies. These and other regulatory changes will require some reorganization of Japanese gas industry structure and gas company management styles.

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Academic Units
Center on Japanese Economy and Business
Center on Japanese Economy and Business, Graduate School of Business, Columbia University
Center on Japanese Economy and Business Working Papers, 117
Published Here
February 9, 2011