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A Nomura Holdings Inc. unit plans to study exporting water from Japan to Australia for agricultural and industrial use as that nation recovers from its worst drought on record, two people familiar with the proposal said.

Nomura Research Institute Ltd. proposes organizing the delivery of water on ships that carry Australian coal to JFE Holdings Inc., Japan’s second-largest steelmaker, which has a mill in Kawasaki, according to the sources, who didn’t want to be identified before an announcement Aug. 20.

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