A US Nuclear Deal with Iran: Implications for Japan
Professor of the University of Minnesota
Managing Director, Institute of Energy Economics Japan
Language: The speech and Q & A will be in English
U.S.-Iran relations could be set for a thaw at the current round of negotiations in Vienna, with signs the Obama administration could allow Iran to run a nuclear programme that could potentially have military applications. A target date for wrapping up the deal has been set for mid-July.
Iran's interest in nuclear technology is highly controversial as it has the world's fourth-largest oil reserves and the world's second-largest natural gas reserves. Iran's nuclear focus is all the more unwelcome given U.S. claims that Iran backs terrorist groups in the Middle East and elsewhere. This has resulted in sanctions forcing Iranian oil exports down 50% from their peak levels.
The implications for Japan would be profound. Iran has been subject to stringent controls on its access to funds and on its ability to export oil, including to Japan.
Japan, traditionally one of Iran's largest oil markets, has tried to stay on friendly terms with Iran, despite coming under pressure from Iran's neighbours to strengthen sanctions. Yet the shutdown of the nuclear reactors in Japan has made oil supply security increasingly important to the country, which has no domestic fossil fuel supplies.
Professor William Beeman of the University of Minnesota will discuss the significance and prospects of the current US/Iranian negotiations, while Koichiro Tanaka (who is fluent in English and Persian) will talk about the difficulties Japan faces as it remains squeezed between US foreign policy goals and its own hunger for cheap oil. Tanaka is the MD of the Institute of Energy Economics Japan. He spent the late 1980s and early 1990s advising the Japanese Embassy in Iran.
Please reserve in advance, 3211-3161 or on the website (still & TV cameras inclusive). Reservations and cancellations are not complete without confirmation.
Professional Activities Committee
Koichiro Tanaka William Beeman