Tokyo Electric Power (TEPCO) on Saturday implemented a hike household electricity bills by 8.47%.
In May, TEPCO had requested government permission to ramp up residential customer bills by 10.28% to help pay ballooning costs in the aftermath of the Fukushima nuclear disaster, but was told to rein in its rise. It then proposed a rate increase of 8.47% which was approved by Chief Cabinet Secretary Osamu Fujimura, Trade and Industry Minister Yukio Edano and Consumer Affairs Minister Jin Matsubara.
The 8.47% hike means that average households will pay about 360 yen more per month.
TEPCO has been ordered by the government to implement further cost-cutting measures, including a 30% reduction in annual salary for managers which will save the utility an estimated 9 billion yen per year. It will also make the bidding procedures for equipment procurement more competitive.
The government has already earmarked 1 trillion yen in public funds to shore up TEPCO’s financial base.