Shell's Japanese refining operation Showa Shell Sekiyu and chemicals-to-energy conglomerate Ube Industries have announced plans to build and operate a 21MW solar power plant.
According to Bloomberg Business Week, the plant will be located in the Yamaguchi prefecture in western Japan. Construction will start in April with the plant due to start operations in the summer of 2014.
Thin film solar panels will be supplied by Solar Frontier, a subsidiary of Showa Shell Sekiyu.
Last month, Showa Shell Sekiyu said that expanding its solar business was one of the company's key strategic goals.
Details of its ambitions were contained in its Medium-Term Business Action Plan in which it stated that it aimed to establish itself as the leading player in the Japanese market across the utility scale, commercial and residential sectors, as well as in the downstream EPC business.
It said: “We will capture the opportunities of rapid demand growth in Japan supported by new feed-in-tariff for renewable energy and establish the number one position in Japan and we will establish our servicing capability to offer customers “full turnkey solutions” ranging from solar panel supply to system procurement, solar power plant development, maintenance, financing, and technical support in order to enhance our added-value for customers.
And the statement added that it aimed to use its Japanese market as a base for international expansion. “We aim to offer customers the most economical and ecological solar power system in the world,” the company said.