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Maritime technology R&D venture in Japan

A new joint venture to pursue R&D projects on various types of maritime technologies has been established in Japan, featuring a number of the country's shipyards as well as other leading companies in its shipping sector, such as ClassNK and NYK (Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha).

MIJAC, the Maritime Innovation Japan Corporation, began operations on July 1 2013, with head offices based in Tokyo and a staff of 14. The full list of MIJAC cooperating partners includes Oshima Shipbuilding, Shin Kurushima Dockyard, Tsuneishi Shipbuilding and Sanoyas Shipbuilding, in addition to ClassNK and NYK.

MIJAC was created with share capital of ¥10,000,000 Japanese Yen (approximately US$100,000), split between the cooperating companies, with Oshima Shipbuilding, Shin Kurushima Dockyard, Tsuneishi Shipbuilding and ClassNK owning 19.7 per cent each, Sanoyas Shipbuilding controlling 14.95 per cent, and NYK taking the remaining 6.25 per cent.

These companies will then provide the funding for MIJAC’s research and development activities, which will focus on technologies in the fields of ship design, ship construction and ship operations technology, as well as new innovations to reduce CO2 and other hazardous substances discharged by ships and to promote the efficient use of marine energy.

Masato Nobuhara, general manager of the Technical Strategy Group at Monohakobi Technology Institute, a wholly owned NYK subsidiary responsible for R&D at the company, has been appointed as the first president of MIJAC.

“With MIJAC positioned at the centre, our vision is to take the state of Japanese shipbuilding, shipping and maritime technology up to a new level and make them known to the world as Japanese technologies,” he said.

“Our customers include cargo owners utilising ocean shipping, maritime shipping companies handling ocean shipping, shipbuilding companies that build the ships, classification societies that handle the ship surveys, and marine equipment manufacturers that produce major equipment for shipboard use.”

“Doing research and development together with our customers is our motto, and we always make our efforts to put our customers' interests first. We ask customers directly about what their needs are, and through them we rapidly get a precise sense of global trends and changes that we will always make our efforts, at full speed, to tackle with the objective of developing technologies that are among the best in the world.”

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