Tokyo eyes ¥1 trillion in financial support for Japanese firms pursuing U.K. nuclear plants

JIJI

The government is considering offering financial assistance through state-affiliated banks for projects won by Japanese companies for nuclear power plant construction in Britain, sources said Thursday.

Under study is a plan for the Japan Bank for International Cooperation and the Development Bank of Japan to invest in and provide loans to local companies that build and operate nuclear power stations, the sources said.

The Japanese government hopes to establish a framework for financial assistance totaling about ¥1 trillion within 2017 also by asking major Japanese and British private financial institutions to participate in the scheme, according to the sources.

Visiting British Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond told reporters in Tokyo on Thursday that Britain is holding talks with the Japanese government, Hitachi Ltd. and Toshiba Corp. on a financial support framework for nuclear power plant construction projects in his country.

On the same day, Hammond met with Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga to exchange opinions about nuclear plant construction.

British Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Secretary Greg Clark plans to visit Japan as early as next week and hold meetings with officials of Hitachi, Toshiba and the JBIC.

Under the envisaged scheme, the Japanese government expects to offer financial assistance to Horizon Nuclear Power Ltd., a unit of Hitachi, and NuGeneration Ltd., which is under the wing of Toshiba.