(Corrects headline, paragraph 1 to show Nikkei reported that firms in talks on alliance, not that alliance has already been formed; also removes reference to a ‘combined company’ from paragraph 1)
Aug 22 (Reuters) - Four major Japanese utility and engineering companies have started talks on a potential partnership in atomic energy, Japan’s Nikkei business daily said on Wednesday.
Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc (TEPCO), Hitachi Ltd, Toshiba and Chubu Electric Power Co Inc have entered negotiations into the possibility of jointly decommissioning obsolete reactors, Nikkei said. (s.nikkei.com/2nUx6DI)
None of the companies were available for comment, outside market hours.
The move comes seven years after the Fukushima disaster that resulted in a devastating meltdown at TEPCO’s nuclear power station. The disaster spurred new safety standards which raised safety-related costs.
TEPCO has 11 boiling-water reactors, while Chubu Electric has five currently offline since the disaster, with a number of them unlikely to get official approval to restart, the newspaper added. (Reporting by Nikhil Kurian Nainan in Bengaluru Editing by James Dalgleish)