The government on Monday ordered Kansai Electric Power Co. to improve its business operations following a bribery scandal involving the former deputy mayor of a town hosting one of its nuclear plants.

Taizo Takahashi, head of the Natural Resources and Energy Agency, summoned Kansai Electric President Takashi Morimoto to announce the administrative slap on the wrist and directed the implementation of measures to prevent a recurrence.

"We take this seriously and will make utmost efforts to implement reforms in the hopes of regaining public trust," Morimoto told reporters.