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Overview of Initiatives to Support Growth of Renewable Energy

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Implementing Wide–ranging Support, from Policy Support to Commercialization Consulting and Financial Aspects

Renewable Energy Feed–in Tariff System Launched

Amid the calling into question of energy supply and demand concepts that has happened since the Great East Japan Earthquake, there has been increasing interest in renewable energy, which has a number of benefits, including having "minimal environmental impact, such as from CO2 emissions," and "enabling energy self–sufficiency." As the Japanese government has thus been working to promote the growth of renewable energy—such as solar, wind, hydroelectric, geothermal, and biomass—a feed–in tariff system for electric power generated by these types of energy was introduced from July 2012. By calculating the total electricity generating capacity of renewable energy power generation facilities that meet certain conditions and providing a mechanism by which electric power companies can purchase that power at a fixed price over a set period of time, this system mitigates the risk of the power generation business and has been designed as a policy to attract new market entrants. Particularly in the case of solar power generation, the installation site and initial costs and the period up until the commencement of power generation present less of a hurdle to a new market entrant when compared with other forms of energy. Many corporations are showing interest, because the system enables market entry at different levels of scale, from comparatively small facilities that utilize the roofs and walls of offices to large–scale megasolar power plants.

Promoting the Growth of Renewable Energy by Multifaceted Customer Support

In addition to vigorously working on research studies relevant to environmental and energy issues, Mizuho has focused its efforts on loans to promote environment–friendly corporate management and facility investment. In Europe, which is engaging in renewable energy with a pioneer spirit, a large number of projects have been financed, including for wind power, solar power, and solar thermal power generation, and a wealth of experience amassed. In Japan, wide–ranging services have been offered, such as from environment–related policy support, corporate environmental management consulting, and environment–related investment fund aspects. Based on the new tariff system, Mizuho is drawing on its wealth of expertise and wide–ranging financial functions to offer support from both sides in formulating business plans for its customers to enter the solar power generation business and in providing financing.

Through its nationwide branches, MHBK is offering wide–ranging support to the introduction of solar power generation facilities. For example, Mizuho is providing information on the policies and systems related to renewable energy to small– and medium–sized enterprises, proposing power generation businesses, coordinating investors and contractors, supporting the drawing up of business plans based on cash flow analysis, and providing funding support.

In addition, Mizuho is deploying support centered on the provision of project financing for megasolar businesses to large corporations. Playing a central role in this regard is the Renewable Energy Task Force set up in August 2011. This cross–organizational task force plays a pivotal role in enabling the sharing of information across business divisions as well as in promoting unified responses, and it is making it possible for Mizuho to build up a top–class track record in the financial industry. In November 2012, Mizuho Mega Solar Fund Co., Ltd. was set up to target investment in the megasolar business and commenced providing equity support.

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Fostering Industries with the Aim of Generating Business Opportunities

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