Kansai Electric Power Co., Japan's second-biggest utility, doubled its capital spending budget for nuclear power plants to bring safety in line with revised earthquake resistance guidelines.
Kansai Electric will spend about 40 billion yen ($341 million) in the year ending March on nuclear safety compared with 20.9 billion yen a year earlier, said spokesman Mitsushi Mori. Among planned improvements, the utility will replace the lid of its Takahama No. 3 reactor vessel to reduce corrosion risk.
Japan, one of the world's most earthquake-prone countries, last year revised its earthquake resistance guidelines for nuclear plants, the first such change in 25 years. All 12 of the country's nuclear operators are boosting spending on safety measures.
A magnitude 6.8 earthquake in July caused a fire and radiation leak at Tokyo Electric Power Co.'s Kashiwazaki Kariwa nuclear power plant in Niigata Prefecture, leading to its indefinite closure. Kansai Electric increased its safety budget before the Niigata quake.
Kansai Electric, the biggest-nuclear operator in Japan after Tokyo Electric, owns 11 nuclear reactors, all located in Fukui Prefecture, western Japan.
The utilities shares fell 55 yen, or 2 percent, to 2,625 yen on the Tokyo Stock Exchange.