April 2, 2014 / 12:26 AM / 4 years ago

Kyushu Electric seeks $970 mln capital injection from Japan -source

TOKYO, April 2 (Reuters) - Kyushu Electric Power Co is in talks with state-owned Development Bank of Japan for a capital infusion, a source with knowledge of the matter told Reuters on Wednesday, making it the second utility this week to seek government support.

Kyushu Electric is asking DBJ to buy 100 billion yen ($965.5 million) of preferred stock in the company, the source said. The government-owned lender is considering the request, which was reported earlier by the Nikkei.

Kyushu Electric spokesman Yuki Hirano said the company is looking into the matter, when contacted by Reuters.

Japanese nuclear operators are in tough financial straits after being forced to import more costly thermal fuels amid a prolonged shutdown of their reactors for safety checks after the Fukushima nuclear disaster in March 2011.

Hokkaido Electric Power Co is asking DBJ to buy 50 billion yen worth of preferred shares in the company, a source said on Tuesday.

Shares in Kyushu Electric were down 4.7 percent, underperforming a 0.9 percent rise in the benchmark Nikkei . ($1 = 103.5750 Japanese Yen) (Reporting by Taiga Uranaka and James Topham; Editing by Aaron Sheldrick and Dominic Lau)

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