Dow Jones Newswires interviews Tepco prez Nishizawa. A major problem is obtaining funds.  I’m not sure what “smart grid” means. I hope “smart meters” doesn’t mean ones like these.

TOKYO (Dow Jones)–Tokyo Electric Power Co. (9501) is making steady progress in its efforts to stabilize the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant and provide compensation to those living around the crisis-hit facility, the company’s president said Thursday.

But Toshio Nishizawa said in an interview with Dow Jones Newswires that the utility is still facing problems in its attempts to obtain funding through the market, and said he was unable to predict when the company would return to profitability.

Tepco suffered combined net losses of nearly Y2 trillion in the last two quarters, due to massive costs for dealing with a core meltdown at the quake-battered plant. The company is also expected to face several trillions of yen in compensation claims …

“Since we cannot issue bonds, our funding situation remains difficult,” Nishizawa said.

The president said that he wants to forge a new direction for the company, and said Tepco will “continue to invest in smart grid and smart meter” technology, even if that means cutting investment in other areas.

via 2011/09/01 18:46 – INTERVIEW: Tepco Making Progress In Fukushima Crisis, But Hurdles Remain -President.