Japan’s Tepco names new president, chairman

A TEPCO logo is pictured on a sign showing the way to the venue of the company's annual shareholders' meeting in Tokyo

TOKYO (Reuters) – Tokyo Electric Power Co Holdings <9501.T> named a new president and chairman on Friday at a time when it has to shoulder a much heavier financial burden from the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster.

Takashi Kawamura, 77, a former chairman of Hitachi Ltd <6501.T>, will succeed Fumio Sudo as chairman. Tomoaki Kobayakawa, 53, president at Tepco’s retail energy unit, was promoted to president, a company statement showed.

Tepco’s current president, Naomi Hirose, will become vice chairman. The changes will officially take place after the annual shareholders’ approval in June.

The move comes as Tepco’s portion of the burden for Fukushima has more than doubled to 15.9 trillion yen ($142 billion). It has become imperative for Tepco to boost its earnings to allocate 500 billion yen in annual profits in coming decades to pay for decommissioning and compensation.

(Reporting by Osamu Tsukimori; Editing by Nick Macfie)