|TEPCO expects lmore oss than previous estimates
Fukushima operator TEPCO said Monday it expected to lose about US$1.29 billion in the year to March, close to three times an earlier estimate, citing compensation and higher energy costs.
Tokyo Electric Power said it was on track to lose 120 billion yen (HK$10 billion) for its full fiscal year, while also reporting that its net loss in the nine months to December shrank to 2.22 billion yen from a whopping 623.01 billion in the earlier year following Japan's quake-tsunami disaster, AFP reports.
Late last year, the utility at the centre of the worst nuclear accident in a generation dramatically slashed its expected full-year loss to 45 billion yen, from 160 billion yen, citing asset sales and cost-cutting for the change.
On Monday, TEPCO said its fuel costs have shot up after Japan shuttered its nuclear reactors in the wake of the accident, forcing operators to turn to pricey fossil fuel alternatives.
"Operating costs rose 12.4 percent from a year earlier... due to an increase in the consumption of fuel for thermal power generation after the total shutdown of nuclear power generation as well as an increase in fuel prices,'' TEPCO said.
A slide in the yen over the past few months has made energy imports pricier for Japanese firms.
A 9.0-magnitude tremor struck off Japan's northeast coast in March 2011, triggering monster waves that swamped the plant's cooling systems, sparking reactor meltdowns and radiation leaks.
Tens of thousands of people have been evacuated from around the plant.