Japan to review plans to abandon nuclear power
London: The new government in Japan has announced it will review planned nuclear power phase-out proposed by the previous administration.
Trade and Industry Minister Toshimitsu Motegi said that reactors would be restarted if considered safe by the nuclear authority.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has promised bold measures to revive the economy, the BBC reports.
The stoppage of nuclear power use by 2040 was ordered following last year’s Fukushima disaster.
However, the failure of the previous Democratic Party to put an end to years of economic stagnation led to an overwhelming poll victory for their rivals earlier this month.
Backed by a two-thirds majority in Parliament, the newly-elected Liberal Democratic-led cabinet took office on Wednesday endorsing Abe''s economic reform plans.
According to the report, veteran trade minister Toshimitsu Motegi, who is also in charge of energy policy, made it clear that the government would not allow its plans to be hampered by higher energy costs.
The prime minister had also said that he would allow nuclear energy a bigger role, despite last year’s disaster.
Japan, which relied on nuclear power for almost one-third of its energy supplies before the incident, shut all its 50 nuclear reactors after the leaks, but recently restarted two of them, the report said.
The move has resulted in higher energy costs, and many big businesses want Japan to return to using nuclear power.
The shutdown of the nuclear reactors has also seen a rise in Japan’s imports of energy sources such as oil and natural gas, widening its trade deficit, the report added.