TEPCO Ordered To Cut Rate Hike

The government said Thursday it will order Tokyo Electric Power Co. to trim its rate hike for households to an average of 8.47 percent from its planned 10.28 percent after determining the utility can further reduce salaries to limit the additional cost burden on consumers.

The rate hike, to take effect Sept. 1, along with the planned injection of ¥1 trillion in public funds, is considered essential for Tepco to overcome its financial plight stemming from the disaster at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant.

Noting that Tepco will be asked to reduce by about ¥83 billion the total costs it initially planned to pass on to customers, Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Yukio Edano said, “After confirming that Tepco has revised its application (on the rate hike) as ordered, I will give permission.”

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