Tokyo Electric Power Co. intends to ask the government a sum of 1 trillion yen to help in the immediate compensation of victims of the nuclear disaster in the Fukushima Daiichi power plant.
The amount will cover compensation for mental sufferings of victims as a result of evacuation and to pay for the losses incurred by small businesses following the nuclear disaster.
It is estimated that compensation for victims would cost TEPCO around 4.5 trillion yen in a two-year period. The 1 trillion yen sought from the government would cover the amount of compensation for victims for this fiscal year.
Sources said TEPCO will include the request in the emergency operating plan which the utility firm will formulate in November together with a government-backed Nuclear Damage Liability Facilitation Fund. The plan which will also contain cost-cutting and other restructuring measures as well as proposed sale of company assets will be submitted to the Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Yukio Edano for approval early next month.
The approval of the plan by Edano would mean this would be the first financial aid by the government pursuant to the compensation law that seeks to avoid bankruptcy of TEPCO.
Aligned with its request for government assistance, TEPCO is planning to halt any substantial increase in electricity rates and to restart operations in Kashiwazaki Kariwa nuclear power plant in Niigata Prefecture beginning next fiscal year.
About 700 to 800 billion yen will be paid by TEPCO for compensation of victims by the end of the calendar year and could reach to 1 trillion yen by the close of the fiscal year. TEPCO and the fund are still finalizing the amount of aid it will eventually request from the government.