national

Deregulation of Japan's electricity market goes into effect

39 Comments
By Yuka Obayashi and Osamu Tsukimori

The requested article has expired, and is no longer available. Any related articles, and user comments are shown below.

© (c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2016.

©2019 GPlusMedia Inc.


39 Comments
Login to comment

I'll bet, initially at least, that SoftBank gets a jump on the others. They are going to be offering package discounts for electricity and cell phone service along with internet as well.

There are plans coming out that will allow customers to pay according to their needs. One example; a single person, living alone, and working daytime hours, could have their rates be charged much higher during daytime hours, as they are not home, and lower during the night time, and vice versa. Plans set up according to need.

People living in areas where there are multiple choices should really check out their options.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

This is great.... I hope small electric companies who use hydro, solar and other safe energy generation offer good deals on electricity..... No more nuclear power generation.... Down with Nuclear power....Up with safe effective sustainable energy generation.....

3 ( +7 / -4 )

I think the bundling of all these additional services with your electricity should be restricted or tightly controlled. They sound good in theory but there's a serious danger that people will end up having no idea how much they are actually paying for electricity if they have to take into account the savings on their mobilephone plan or how many airline miles they are getting etc etc. It could defeat the entire purpose of deregulating the market which was price competition.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

It sounds very complicated to me. I don't even know how to go about changing my electricity supplier, so I guess I'll stick with what I get now from TEPCO.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

An illusion, i don't expect my savings to go up.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Well, some14some, you never know...our local gas company is bringing over their material this weekend. KanDen charges more per kilowatt over a certain limit . I forget what the line was, but if you use over that amount, you are charged nearly double per KWh. The gas company is going to lower the price per KWh over that line, it should make a difference, depending on what their base price is.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

BrainiacAPR. 01, 2016 - 07:47AM JST

It sounds very complicated to me. I don't even know how to go about changing my electricity supplier, so I guess I'll stick with what I get now from TEPCO.

Hopefully the government or a private organisation will set up a website to help you choose like this one in New Zealand: https://www.powerswitch.org.nz/powerswitch

And maybe services like NZ's 'Powershop' will open where you can buy power as you need it and when rates are lower using your PC or iphone!

http://www.powershop.co.nz/

2 ( +3 / -1 )

When we see foreign utility or investment corporations entering the market. (French, American, Indian and shock horror . Chinese), we will see deregulation and real competition.

At the moment it is same usual suspects.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Hope for solar panels and geoexchange installations to destroy the nuclear market

2 ( +3 / -1 )

A few initial thoughts:

-Enron -Companies tasked with the expensive upkeep of nuclear reactors being undercut doesn't sound good. -Will Softbank's service resemble its miserable phone service? -Japanese companies usually tend toward collusion: expect an initial period of slight discounts followed by price-fixing once the major players have emerged.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

Remember when AU was awarded the ability to sell iPhones and everyone thought this is great, as Softbanks monopoly would be broken and competitive pricing would happen.....NOT

5 ( +5 / -0 )

This could be huge. Competition should bring out the best prices for the consumer. I think giving consumers options is great.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Usual suspects, same old strategies. It will be market-wide collusion, as with everything else in corporate Japan.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Japan’s record use of coal is likely to keep rising, as companies such as Nippon Paper and trading house Mitsubishi Corp plan to build 43 new coal-fired units.

Let's Global Warming!

6 ( +7 / -1 )

As others have mentioned, I can imagine that already there are scores of late night meetings, as they divide up the country and fix their margins.

But the first thing they ought to do is decide on one countrywide standard for Japanese power transmission, probably 50Hz, instead of the current East 50/ West 60 divide, and all of the limitations that causes.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

They will all eventually jump into bed with each other and price fix it and snooker the Japanese public...once again! The more I look the more I see this country is the closest thing to "The Matrix". This country needs a Neo!

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Anticipating competition, TEPCO has dropped prices for some customers and targeted other regions in Japan. It is >>changing its logo and tying up with billionaire Masayoshi Son’s SoftBank Corp to package mobile phone and electricity >>supplies.

Free Market Japanese Style, re-branding the same old guys with a different name or a different logo. Bye bye monopoly, Welcome price fixing ! How many will fall in the scam thinking buying from a different provider while actually ending buying from the same TEPCO ? I hope that the "source" of the electricity will be clearly disclosed by those new comers, but in a country where food labeling scandals are legion, I am not holding my breath for it....

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Hope for solar panels and geoexchange installations to destroy the nuclear market unfortunately you cant chose which type of generation you want, and with all the renewables in the last 4 yrs it still only accounts for 10% base load at best, with Japans commitment to lowering its CO2 sorry nuclear will be around for many years to come.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

This is double Dutch! For the most part these new companies will still be buying electricity from the monopolies and selling it on. There are very few new companies generating their own electricity and I can't see how they could compete with the monopolies for pricing.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Hopefully the government or a private organisation will set up a website to help you choose like this one in New Zealand: https://www.powerswitch.org.nz/powerswitch

It's in Japanese, but kakaku.com let's you compare plans on their website:

http://kakaku.com/energy/

3 ( +3 / -0 )

So how do you change your electricity supplier? This is confusing unless it is wireless.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

start a company for solar and geoexchange. No wires and thus no sharing of resources to regional oligarphies. Homes and businesses lock in their rates while the difference pays the systems off. Municipalities could do it as they don't care how long it takes; as long as there's cashflow and as long as it would make communities resilient in an earthquake prone country. Done and done

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

My bad, didn't use the "Link" brackets (an edit button would be nice btw):

http://kakaku.com/energy/

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Solar Power companies should give deals like half off installation and energy buy back when you home generates access energy.. and apartment complexes and office buildings should generate their own power via hydro, solar or even gas generators.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

definitely co-generations should be an option.

I would think a solar / geoexchange install may seem daunting to the average homeowner though, so a local utility doing it on behalf of the city would be like improving the housing stock. Like back when indoor plumbing was installed. It was just done. It wasn't owner by owner. I think if solar / geoexchange were seen as the right for everyone and the baseload of every building then that would be more successful and lead to the greatest reducing in distant generation costs and transit. The nice thing is that this model can work anywhere.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I heard that Softbank electricity is better because their electrons are a little more energetic and flow more smoothly.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Look out for collusion to increase electricity prices.

It happened in the U.S. when brokers started trading electricity as a commodity after so called deregulation.

Still, I think it is a good idea. Monopolies are bad for the consumer.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Japan’s power utilities will lose their monopoly over electricity on Friday

Goodbye, monopoly. Hello, oligopoly.

Further excuse for TEPCO to wash its hands of Fukushima at taxpayers' expense?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Let's Global Warming!

I wonder if deregulation would divide the country into two camps: hippies and energy cheapos. Japanese PR companies digging up Western environmentalist cartoon characters from the 1990s (Captain Planet anyone?) to further the cause of clean energy. Japanese Shintoists creating shrines out of solar farms, etc. Yeah it's gonna get crazy.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Japan’s 8 billion yen retail market.

Surely this has to be a typo. 8 billion yen is about $70 million US, the market must be worth many times more than that.

Moderator: Yes, that was a typo and has been corrected.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Hopefully this won't result in even more cost-cutting like what caused TEPCO to screw up so badly. We all know how that turned out.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"The government is hoping increased competition in the .... remaining restricted part of the electricity market will boost efficiency and innovation and cut prices that are among the highest in the world."

We are talking about pre Abe govt here.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Coal: Taste it again for the first time

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Anyone who thinks that they are going to get cheaper electricity has got rocks in their head!

1 ( +2 / -1 )

This is a huge step in the right direction. Ever since I found out the rotating power shutdowns the Kanto area had to go through after the 3.11. tsunami was caused in part because of grid control of power, I've been convinced this is the way Japan must go. ve heard that in the future it may be possible for standard houses to sell power back to the grid as well and make some yen. This is a great day, let's hope Nagatacho continues to recognize the importance.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Sounds good on the surface but where do they source electricity from. Add in many of them force you to sign a 2-3yr contract.

I advise my friends to wait 2 yrs to see who will survive among all those new companies, I can already foresee rate changes in the near future.

Plus, how many can supply in case of an earthquake, etc.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

What about geothermal power? Or experimental wave power? Coal will just turn Tokyo into Beijing (cough cough, I can't see 2 meters in front of me).

1 ( +1 / -0 )

geothermal as well as hydrothermal. Japan being an island nation and with most of its major cities on the shoreline could use a system like Deep Lake Water Cooling here in Toronto. The difference in Japan would be salt water, which can hold even more energy making it even more effective.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@Ferngulley

Read my post. Illusion. No such thing as competing price wars here.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites