A panel of experts in the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry decided on Dec. 13 on new feed-in-tariff (FIT) rates for electricity generated from renewable sources from fiscal 2017 and onward. The residential FIT rate for solar power will be reduced for seven consecutive years through fiscal 2019. Wind power will also see the first decline in purchase price in fiscal 2017. The rate cuts are aimed at reducing surcharges on electricity bills, but since electricity that was given a higher FIT rate in the past is still being purchased, it will not be easy to reduce the burden on households quickly.
METI will look into the panel’s proposal for new FIT rates and make a final decision by the end of the current fiscal year. (Abridged)