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Damage to power plant to be paid by TEPCO


KASHIWAZAKI, Japan—Tokyo Electric Power Co. will have to foot the bill without help from insurers for recent earthquake damage that could amount to several billion dollars.

The Kashiwazaki Kariwa nuclear power plant owned by TEPCO was heavily damaged by the 6.8-magnitude quake that struck Niigata prefecture on July 16. The earthquake was responsible for at least 11 deaths, around 1,800 injuries and property damage that could reach 1.5 trillion yen ($12.5 billion).

Insured property damages are expected to be a small percentage of the total loss, likely amounting to around $168 million, according to catastrophe modeler Risk Management Solutions Inc. of Newark, California.

In its damage estimate released this week, Niigata government officials said the loss includes 700 billion yen ($5.8 billion) of damage to TEPCO's nuclear power facility.

A TEPCO spokesman in Tokyo would not confirm the prefecture's damage estimate, saying the utility will release its own estimate next week. He said TEPCO has no insurance coverage in place to respond to the damages and will fund the loss itself.

The plant remained closed this week.