Wed, Aug 10, 2011 - Page 10 News List

Nuclear disaster puts Tokyo Electric Power Co deep in the red

AP, TOKYO

The utility behind the unfolding Japanese nuclear disaster reported a ¥571.7 billion (US$7.4 billion) quarterly loss yesterday and its president is expecting the red ink to swell over restoration and compensation costs.

Tokyo Electric Power Co’s (TEPCO) Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant was sent into meltdown by the March 11 quake and tsunami, and has still not been brought under control.

President Toshio Nishizawa, said yesterday he still did not know the full extent of the red ink because of too many unknowns — such as the size of future compensation payments.

He also said he did not know how much of a government bailout may be needed to ride out the disaster, but promised that his company was trying to take care of problems on its own by selling assets and cutting costs.

“We will put in our best effort,” he told reporters. “We have not been able to make an assessment yet.”

The utility had a loss of ¥5.4 billion in the April to June quarter the previous year. It sank into a ¥1.25 trillion loss for the fiscal year that ended March over the disaster.

TEPCO said its extraordinary loss for the April to June quarter this year reflected damage compensation totaling ¥397.7 billion, while restoration costs and losses totaled ¥105.5 billion.

Another factor crimping TEPCO’s bottom-line is that Japanese companies are cutting back on electricity consumption by 15 percent because of possible power shortages caused by the Fukushima Dai-ichi woes.

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