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Japan to promote American LNG exports with eye on trade gap

Financing and insurance package aims to blunt Trump's push for bilateral pact

Japanese companies shipping American liquefied natural gas to third countries can soon claim the same preferential financing and insurance already available when exporting the fuel to Japan. (Photo by Hirofumi Yamamoto)

TOKYO -- Japan will offer cheap loans and insurance to exporters shipping American liquefied natural gas to Asia and elsewhere, aiming to chip away at the U.S. trade deficit.

As early as this year, Japanese trading houses, petroleum wholesalers and other businesses exporting American natural gas to third countries will become eligible for low-rate financing from the Japan Bank for International Cooperation and discounted insurance from Nippon Export and Investment Insurance. Insurance premiums are expected to fall by around half compared with now.

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