Tepco may have to pay nuclear compensation to businesses longer


The Abe administration and the ruling coalition are working to extend compensation payments by Tokyo Electric Power Co. to businesses affected by the March 2011 nuclear disaster at the Fukushima No. 1 plant by one year, according to officials.

In response to strong pressure from the firms affected, the end of compensation payments to businesses that were hit by falling sales or that were forced to suspend operations will be February 2017, instead of the February 2016 limit planned by Tepco, the officials said Tuesday.

This will be included in a set of proposals from the ruling Liberal Democratic Party’s task force for accelerating reconstruction of the areas struck by the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami, which will be compiled by the end of this month at the earliest.

The administration is then expected to decide formally on the extension by the end of June.

As of the end of March, Tepco was due to pay a total of ¥465.5 billion in compensation to businesses affected by the nuclear crisis.

Late last year, the program’s termination was extended by one year from the initial date of February 2015. Attention has been focused on whether a further extension will be approved to support reconstruction in disaster-hit areas.