Japan sees quake damage reaching up to $300 bln - report

TOKYO Tue Mar 22, 2011 11:56pm GMT

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TOKYO (Reuters) - The Japanese government expects total damage from a devastating earthquake that hit northeast Japan this month to reach 15 trillion to 25 trillion yen ($185-308 billion), the Nikkei newspaper reported on Wednesday.

Economics Minister Kaoru Yosano will present the estimate to a meeting of cabinet ministers to be held on Wednesday, the Nikkei said, without citing sources.

That will far exceed the 10 trillion yen in damages from the Kobe earthquake in 1995, the paper said.

The estimate covers damage to roads, homes, factories and other infrastructure but does not include losses in economic activity from planned power outages and the nuclear power plant accident in Fukushima, it said.

The government will use the estimate to map out disaster relief plans and an emergency budget to fund recovery costs, the Nikkei said. ($1 = 81.045 Japanese Yen)

(Reporting by Leika Kihara; Editing by Edmund Klamann)

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