DUBAI: Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) struck its first fuel ammonia cooperation deal with the UAE’s Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC).

On Jan. 14, the signing of the memorandum of cooperation took place during a virtual meeting between METI Minister Hiroshi Kajiyama and ADNOC CEO and the UAE’s Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology Sultan Al-Jaber, METI said in a statement.

The two countries also agreed to further advance bilateral cooperation in areas including hydrogen and fuel ammonia. Japan plans to develop its supply chain of blue ammonia in the Middle East by the end of the decade, according to S&P Global Platts.

The UAE is Japan’s second-largest crude oil supplier, accounting for over 30 percent of oil imports right after Saudi Arabia.

READ MORE: Japan receives first shipment of blue ammonia from Saudi Aramco, SABIC

Abu Dhabi is pushing toward a clean energy initiative through ADNOC, which has a new unit that will focus on hydrogen.

“The directorate will also lead ADNOC activities to capitalize on the emerging global market for hydrogen, building on the company’s existing position as a major producer with existing infrastructure, partnerships and customer relationships,” ADNOC said in a statement on Jan. 13.

In September of last year, Japan received its first shipment of blue ammonia from Saudi Aramco, in partnership with Saudi Basic Industries Corporation. The shipment contained 40 tons of high-grade blue ammonia and is meant for use in zero-carbon power generation.

JOHANNESBURG: Dubai-based airline Emirates said on Thursday it would temporarily suspend all flights to and from South Africa from Saturday due to operational reasons, without elaborating.
“Emirates flights to/from South Africa will temporarily be suspended from Saturday 16 January to 28 January 2021 due to operational reasons,” the largest carrier in the United Arab Emirates said in a statement.
Inbound travel to South Africa for leisure and business has dropped since mid December when the country identified a new, more contagious variant of the coronavirus, forcing countries such as England, Germany, Switzerland and several in Asia to cancel flights to and from the country.
The new variant is said to be behind a major spike in daily infections and rising deaths for the last month, with total cases currently standing at close to 1.3 million and over 35,000 deaths.
“Customers holding tickets with final destinations in South Africa from 16 January to 28 January will not be accepted for travel at their point of origin,” Emirates said.
Its local partner in South Africa — Airlink, which sells airline seats provided by Emirates for local destinations, did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment.