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Marubeni sells CO2 credit in new secondary market

TOKYO, Nov 30 (Reuters) - Japan's Marubeni Corp (8002.T: Quote, Profile, Research) has sold a local power company a credit equivalent to 10,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) under the Kyoto Protocol global climate scheme, the first such deal using a newly launched Web-based platform in Japan.

The transaction was made and delivered on Thursday, Japan's fifth-biggest trading house said on Friday.

Previously, transactions involving such credits were made over-the-counter through forward contracts for delivery during the 2008-2012 period when signatories are obliged to meet their Kyoto commitments.

Tokyo has resisted any moves towards a carbon tax or a mandatory cap-and-trade system to penalise polluters, such as in the European Union. It is instead relying on voluntary reduction measures by industries and investment in carbon offsets in return for funding clean-energy projects in developing countries under Kyoto's clean development mechanism.

Daigo Noguchi, a Marubeni spokesman, said the Web-based platform is more transparent than earlier transactions.

"We put out the information about the credits as if we placed them on store shelves," Noguchi said. "A customer came and bought them."

The Web site was launched earlier this month by the state-backed Japan Bank for International Cooperation. Companies wanting to sell credits post information such as the amount on offer, and buyers can contact them.

Demand for carbon credits remains low in Japan in the absence of tough requirements in place in Europe, so the sales price was lower than the level currently traded there, Marubeni said.

"It's our first footprint," Noguchi said. "It's too early to say how much profit we earned from the transaction."

In the secondary market in London for clean development mechanism carbon credits, one credit, equivalent to a reduction in emissions of one tonne of CO2, was offered at around 18 euros ($27) on Friday. ($1=.6783 Euro) (Reporting by Risa Maeda; Editing by Mike Miller)

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