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Tepco to request loans from Japanese life insurers: paper

TOKYO (Reuters) - Tokyo Electric Power Co <9501.T> will ask major life insurers, including Nippon Life and Dai-ichi Life <8750.T>, for hundreds of billions of yen in additional loans as it faces big bills in restoring control over a crippled nuclear plant and paying for fuel costs for thermal plants, Japan's Asahi newspaper reported on Saturday.

A Dai-ichi Life spokesman said his company's officials were scheduled to meet counterparts at the power company, also known as TEPCO, to talk about the loan request concerning difficulties at the Fukushima power plant. He said the insurer would consider the request once the utility presented it.

A Nippon Life spokesman said he has not heard anything related to the Asahi report.

Dai-ichi Life is the top shareholder in Tokyo Electric with a 4.1 percent stake and Nippon Life Insurance has 3.9 percent.

In late March, TEPCO's main lender, Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group <8316.T>, and other major banks provided a total 2 trillion yen in emergency loans to the utility.

(Reporting by Taiga Uranaka; Editing by Ron Popeski)

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