Japan Keen On Namibia's Lithium And Green Hydrogen

18 Aug 2023

Namibia is increasingly becoming a favourable investment destination for green energy, with Japan the latest country to secure access to green hydrogen and lithium in the country.

The Japanese Minister of Trade, Economics and Industry, Yasutoshi Nishimura arrived in Namibia in early August 2023 during his five-nation Africa trip to discuss closer cooperation, particularly in the mining sector and trade.

Three agreements were signed at State House in Windhoek.

“I am delighted at being here and signing agreements that are aimed at enhancing collaborations between the two countries,” said Minister Nishimura.  This was the first ever visit of a Japanese minister to Namibia.

First, a trade agreement was signed which paves the way to establish a bilateral trade commission between both countries and their trade ministries.


Japanese Minister Ysutoshi Nishimura signed a trade agreement with his Namibian counterpart, Minister Lucia Iipumbu.
Photo: Namibian Presidency


The Japanese Organisation for Metals and Energy Security (JOGMEC), a state-owned resource entity, signed an agreement with Namibia's mining and energy ministry to embark on a study about lithium sites in the country which could be explored. 

Japan will make available 1.5 billion US dollars (about 28 million N$) for this purpose, including establishing a supply chain for lithium.

JOGMEC is already the partner of a Canadian company, Namibia Critical Metals, which explores lithium on the farm Lofdal near Khorixas in Namibia. 

The third agreement signed was between the chief executive officer of the Itochu company, Shinya Ishizuka and the CEO of the Namibian company Hyphen Hydrogen Energy (HHE), Marco Raffinetti.

Itochu aims to establish ammonia value chains in various existing industrial applications as well as for future energy use. Namibia plans to establish its first green hydrogen plant near Lüderitzbucht where green ammonia will also be produced.

Brigitte Weidlich

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