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» Utilities will be allowed to add costs of decommissioning even after the liberation of electric retail sale

Regional utilities will be allowed to pass on costs to consumers for decommissioning nuclear power plants even after the retail sale of electricity to households is liberalized in 2016.

The move proposed by the industry ministry reflects concerns that it could be difficult for the utilities to raise funds for decommissioning work if the liberalization produces fierce competition among electricity suppliers, the sources said.

However, the ministry could find itself being criticized for giving favorable treatment to regional electric power companies that have nuclear power plants even though its intention is to make decommissioning go smoothly, the sources added.

Costs for decommissioning nuclear power plants are already added to electricity bills. This is set to continue because liberalization of the market in 2016 will ramp up competition among electricity suppliers, and this could make it difficult for the major electric power companies to generate sufficient profits to carry out decommissioning work.

<Media Report>
Power rates to reflect decommissioning costs even after deregulation (Asahi Newspaper)

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