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HOME  > Past issues  > 2012 June 27 - July 3  > Major media involved in advocating restart of NPPs
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2012 June 27 - July 3 [NUCLEAR CRISIS]

Major media involved in advocating restart of NPPs

June 28, 2012
Japan’s major media companies are calling for restarting idled nuclear reactors and maintaining nuclear power generation into the future against the public demand seeking a society free of nuclear power plants.

The Yomiuri Shimbun stated on June 17, “We highly appreciate” the Noda Cabinet’s decision to resume the offline nuclear reactors at the Oi NPP in Fukui Prefecture. The Sankei Shimbun also stated on the same day, “We welcome the decision as a step toward the normalization of the power supply.”

Behind the mass media’s attachment to nuclear energy are their cozy relationships with the forces that profit from nuclear power.

Minami Naoya, ex-president of Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO), is an outside auditor of Fuji Media Holdings to which the Sankei Shimbun and Fuji Television Network are affiliated. Japan Atomic Industrial Forum President Imai Takashi is an outside director of Nippon Television Network Corporation. Former Chairman of the Japan Business Federation (Nippon Keidanren) Mitarai Fujio is an outside auditor of the Yomiuri Shimbun. Araki Hiroshi, ex-president of TEPCO, is an outside auditor of TV TOKYO Corporation.

Large media companies also have close connections with megabank groups. Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation, the core company of the Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group, is the 3rd largest shareholder of TEPCO, holding 2.66% of its stocks. TEPCO is the largest customer of the bank, with loans amounting to 942.7 billion yen.

Major financial institutions have instructed the power company to raise electricity rates and reactivate suspended nuclear reactors in exchange for financing. TV Asahi Corporation and Nikkei are major stockholders of the Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group. Nishikawa Yoshifumi, former president of the group, has served as an outside auditor of Tokyo Broadcasting System Holdings since 2004.
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