Nuclear projects in doubt as Toshiba stocks crash

By Mike Hayes15 February 2017

The site of the planned nuclear power station near Sellafield, UK

The site of the planned nuclear power station near Sellafield, UK

Japanese technology giant Toshiba has seen its shares fall 12%, following the announcement of multi-million-dollar losses in this fiscal year.

The losses are due to the Tokyo-based firm’s US-based nuclear energy arm, Westinghouse Electric, which it acquired in 2015, for US$229 million.

Toshiba has asked for another month before releasing its accounts for 2016, but said in a preliminary report that it expects losses to total US$3.4 billion.

Toshiba’s chairman, Shigenori Shiga, announced his resignation on Tuesday, saying he was taking “management responsibility” for the huge financial losses.

Toshiba’s involvement in the planned development of a US$12.4 billion nuclear power station near Sellafield in the UK, has now been thrown into doubt.

As the main shareholder in the NuGen consortium, Toshiba’s losses have caused uproar in the UK, where the development of the plant was expected to support some 20,000 jobs.

It has been reported that the Japanese government will likely step in to ensure the survival of Toshiba, but the viability of many of the company’s current and future projects cannot be guaranteed.

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