Sojitz Corporation


EBISTRADE, INC. Participates in Natural Gas Vehicle Travel around Japan

Aug. 21, 2003

TOKYO(as of Aug 21, 2003)--EBISTRADE, INC. (Head office: Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo; President: Yoshiharu Terai), which operates the 'Mantannet Dot. Com' service station management support website, will dispatch a natural gas vehicle on a driving survey around Japan extending cooperation with the survey sponsored by the Saitama Energy Association (located in Kawagoe-shi, Saitama).

The driving survey will be conducted as part of 2003 Survey on and Realization of Oil Distributor Advanced Management, which is an Agency of Natural Resources and Energy supplementary project. The driving survey aims to promote the diffusion of natural gas vehicles, which are the most feasible low emission vehicles, and to address the supply system infrastructure building including natural gas filling stations.

In addition to undertaking the long-distance drive, making stops at 16 natural gas filling stations in various locations across Japan to fill up with gas and explore the current status of the stations and their convenience to users, EBISTRADE, which supports the diffusion of service stations, decided to conduct the driving survey around Japan in order to experience the performance of a natural gas vehicle.

After its August 21 departure from Kawagoe-shi in Saitama prefecture, the vehicle will head off to the Japan's northernmost natural gas filling station (Nagayama Eco Station) located in Asahikawa-shi, Hokkaido, drive southwards to stop in Imabari-shi, where the first natural gas filling station in Shikoku will be build in October this year, and pay a courtesy call to the city office there. In Kyushu, the vehicle will stop at the Japan's southernmost natural gas filling station (Taniyama Eco Station), located in Kagoshima-shi, before returning to its starting place in Kawagoe-shi on August 29. The nine-day, eight-night trip around Japan, with stops at 16 natural gas filling stations for refueling, will result in a total vehicle mileage of 4,000 kilometers. 

'Mantannet Dot. Com' operated by EBISTRADE provides over 500 member service stations with station development consulting services. EBISTRADE sees service stations as the end user contact points, and offers various information. In addition, the company will support its clients in creating profit-earning gas stations by absorbing consumer needs, make service station management more profitable, and will revive service stations across the nation.

Nissho Iwai - Nichimen Holdings Corporation considers business pertaining to automobiles one of the core business areas, and holds development and expansion of automobile-related business as its strategy.

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