May 7 Toshiba Corp said on Wednesday it
wrote down by more than $300 million the value of its stake in a
company planning to extend a nuclear power plant in Texas, amid
uncertainty over the award of licenses for reactors in the U.S.
Toshiba had only last month scored a victory in a dispute
with the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission over foreign
ownership rules, when the watchdog's judicial arm ruled in the
Japanese company's favour.
But the NRC also said it will not make any final reactor
license decisions anywhere in the U.S. until late 2014 at the
earliest due to issues surrounding the long-term storage of
spent nuclear fuel.
Japan's Fukushima nuclear disaster in 2011 has forced a
reassessment of atomic power, and cheap shale gas and coal has
led to the closure of several older plants in the U.S.
Nuclear Innovation North America, which is 90 percent owned
by New Jersey-based NRG Energy Inc and 10 percent owned
by Toshiba, wants to build two new reactors at the South Texas
nuclear power plant.
"Toshiba has undertaken a conservative reassessment of asset
value of Nuclear Innovation North America ... and recognised an
operating loss of 31 billion yen ($305 million)," the Japanese
company said in a statement.
The South Texas plant has two 1,280-megawatt reactors. In
2007, the plant's owners applied to the NRC to add two Toshiba
1,350 MW Advanced Boiling Water Reactors at a cost of at least
($1 = 101.5550 Japanese Yen)
(Reporting by Aaron Sheldrick)