TEPCO to Accept Foreign Workers at Crippled Fukushima N-Plant

Economy

Tokyo, April 18 (Jiji Press)--Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc. <9501> plans to accept under Japan's new resident status foreign workers for the decommissioning of its disaster-crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, company sources said Thursday.

The move is apparently intended to cope with a serious labor shortage at the plant, where an unprecedented triple meltdown occurred due to serious damage caused by the March 2011 powerful earthquake and tsunami.

But strict management would be needed in accepting foreign workers at the nuclear plant, in light of the possibility that inadequate communication due to their lack of Japanese-language skills could lead to accidents and other mishaps, observers said.

Japan introduced the new resident status on April 1, with a view to increasing the number of foreign workers in the country. Foreigners will be accepted in 14 industries facing acute labor shortages, including nursing and agriculture.

Of the 14 sectors, work at the nuclear plant is related to the construction, electrical and electronic information, building cleaning, industrial machinery manufacturing and restaurant industries, the sources said.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press