The operator of Japan’s crippled Fukushima nuclear power plant was effectively nationalised Tuesday as it received one trillion yen ($12.8 billion) of taxpayer money to stay afloat.
The public bailout of Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) in the wake of last year’s tsunami-triggered accident gives the government 50.11 percent of the utility’s voting rights.
And the deal has an option which allows the Nuclear Damage Liability Facilitation Fund to raise the stake up to 75.84 percent to impose stronger control if TEPCO fails to push reforms.
The country’s biggest utility will remain under state control for a “considerably long period of time”, Yukio Edano, the minister of economy, trade and industry, told a news conference.
But he added it would be “appropriate” for TEPCO to repay the debt and restore itself “as a purely private company in course of time”.