Mon, Oct 24, 2011 - Page 10 News List

TEPCO looks to raise US$262m for nuclear payouts

AFP, TOKYO

Tokyo Electric Power Co (TEPCO), operator of Japan’s crippled Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant, plans to sell part of its stake in a wind power utility to raise funds for compensation payouts, a report said yesterday.

The embattled company will sell a 20 percent interest in Eurus Energy Holdings to trading firm Toyota Tsusho for an estimated ¥20 billion (US$262 million), the Nikkei Shimbum reported.

Eurus Energy, Japan’s largest wind power utility, is a joint venture owned 60 percent by TEPCO and 40 percent by Toyota Tsusho.

COMPENSATION

Of the ¥20 billion TEPCO will receive from the sale, about half will be used to finance payouts for victims of the nuclear accident triggered by the March 11 earthquake and tsunami, the Nikkei said, without citing a source.

TEPCO declined to confirm the report because “no decision has been made on the issue,” it said in a statement.

RAISING FUNDS

TEPCO is required to raise funds to meet compensation costs — estimated by a government panel at ¥4.5 trillion by 2013 — through cost cuts, asset sales and other restructuring, in addition to securing further state help.

Eurus Energy operates wind farms in the US, Europe and South Korea, as well as Japan.

FUTURE GAINS

With renewable energy attracting greater attention worldwide, TEPCO will maintain a 40 percent stake in the firm with an eye toward reaping gains on a future initial public offering, the Nikkei said.

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