The government decided Tuesday to provide an additional 666.2 billion yen to Tokyo Electric Power Co. so the struggling utility can pay compensation stemming from the 2011 Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant disaster.
The decision brings the total amount of compensation assistance by a state-backed bailout fund to 3.79 trillion yen, moving closer to the 5 trillion yen ceiling for special government bonds which the fund can convert into cash.
Under the current assistance scheme, the Nuclear Damage Liability Facilitation Fund is allocated a type of bond from the government that carries no interest and can be cashed when necessary.
TEPCO received a separate capital injection of 1 trillion yen from the government last year to bolster its financial standing, a move that put the utility under de facto state control.
TEPCO needs massive funds not only to compensate people and companies affected by the nuclear disaster, triggered by a huge earthquake and tsunami on March 11, 2011, but also to scrap the Fukushima plant's crippled reactors and finance increasing fuel costs for thermal power generation.