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N-plant go-ahead as Toshiba loses £2.7bn

TOSHIBA’S chairman quit yesterday as the Japanese giant revealed a financial black hole in its nuclear business.

Shigenori Shiga stepped down hours after the company said it was on track to announce an annual loss of £2.7billion and a £5billion writedown in its US nuclear projects.

The move left UK unions voicing concern about the future of the planned £10billion nuclear plant in Cumbria. The conglomerate, which is building the reactors with NuGen, said in a statement: ‘Toshiba will continue participating in the project without taking on any risk from carrying out actual construction work.’ It added it will not take on new nuclear construction projects.

President Satoshi Tsunakawa bowed deeply at a news conference to apologise for ‘troubling investors and stakeholders’.

Toshiba had delayed reporting its official financial results by a month, sending its shares tumbling eight per cent in Tokyo trading. Analysts said it must sell its lucrative computer chip business to avoid folding.