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Tepco posts solid first-half profit sans reactors, rate hikes

AFP-JIJI

The operator of the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant posted a solid first-half pretax profit Friday, despite not restarting any of its idled reactors or hiking electricity rates.

Tokyo Electric Power Co. (Tepco) refrained from making full-year projections, saying it is difficult to do so while its workhorse nuclear plant remains offline following the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami.

Tepco, which was effectively nationalized in the wake of the crisis, said it chalked up a group pretax profit of ¥242.8 billion ($2.23 billion) in the April-September half, up 71.4 percent from a year earlier. It attributed the solid result to postponed construction of power plants and cuts in manpower and materials costs.

Its revenue rose 3.7 percent to ¥3.334 trillion despite a decline in electricity sales caused by cooler summer temperatures.

Tepco was forecast to book a pretax profit of ¥130 billion for the full year, topping ¥100 billion for a second straight year, Kyodo News said last week.

In the year to March 2014, Tepco posted a pretax profit of ¥101.42 billion against a loss of ¥326.96 billion the previous year.