The Nippon Foundation’s International Seminar on Offshore Development Roughly 170 people participate in hybrid event

The Nippon Foundation’s International Seminar on Offshore Development was held at the Foundation’s head office in Tokyo on September 28. The seminar used a hybrid in-person and online format and roughly 170 people participated, with presentations by speakers followed by a lively question and answer session.

DeepStar’s director Shakir Shamshy giving the keynote presentation


In 2020, then Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga announced a target of Japan achieving a carbon-neutral society with zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. The Paris Agreement, adopted in 2015, set a goal of limiting the global rise in temperatures to 1.5˚C above pre-industrial levels, and many countries around the world, including Japan, are working toward this goal. This means that a variety of issues, including global warming countermeasures, the use of renewable energy, and finding alternatives to carbon-based fuels need to be addressed in the field of international offshore development.

To contribute to these efforts, The Nippon Foundation has concluded agreements and launched coordinated technological development projects with DeepStar*1 of the United States, GCE NODE and NORSE*2 of Norway, and Scottish Enterprise.*3 To date, the Foundation has assisted 40 projects with subsidies totaling roughly 2.3 billion yen. The seminar featured presentations on the current status of DeepStar’s joint technological development and achievements being made in joint technological development in Norway.

  • * 1. DeepStar: A consortium for offshore technology development consisting of companies responsible for exploration, development, and production of offshore oil and natural gas around the world, including global upstream companies Chevron, Shell, and Equinor, as well as companies, universities, and research institutes that provide products and services to these upstream companies.
  • * 2. GCE NODE: An industry-driven cluster for ocean technologies based in southern Norway, comprising more than 120 companies. NORCE: Norway’s largest independent research institute, conducting research for both the public and private sectors to facilitate informed and sustainable choices for the future.
  • * 3. Scottish Enterprise: Scotland’s national economic development agency and a non-departmental public body of the Scottish Government. To deliver a significant, lasting effect on the Scottish economy, they work with partners in the public and private sectors to find and exploit the best opportunities.


The seminar began with welcoming remarks by The Nippon Foundation Chairman Yohei Sasakawa, who gave an overview of The Nippon Foundation’s joint technological development programs and expressed his hopes for the role Japanese companies will play.

Yohei Sasakawa

This was followed by the keynote address by Shakir Shamshy, DeepStar’s director, who gave an overview of DeepStar and the project’s latest activities, and a presentation titled “Chevron Deepwater Strategy and the Energy Transition.”

DeepStar’s director Shakir Shamshy

Next, five companies presented updates on ongoing projects under the TNF- DeepStar Joint Ocean Innovation Project.

Satoshi Shimizu of Seisgadget Ltd., one of the project partners

The second part of the seminar featured presentations on the TNF – Norway Joint Ocean Innovation Project. Nabil Belbachir of project partner NORCE gave an overview of the project and presented recent developments, and was followed by an update on ongoing projects by project partner Yokogawa Electric Corp. The seminar concluded with a lively Q&A session with the roughly 170 participants who attended either in-person or online.

Nabil Belbachir of NORCE

Related Links


Ocean Affairs Department
The Nippon Foundation

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