NEW YORK (AP) -- First Solar will invest about $100 million in Japan to develop solar power plants.
The largest U.S. solar company said Friday that it will team with Japanese companies to develop, build and operate solar power plants. The company has created operating subsidiary First Solar Japan GK and opened a Tokyo office.
Japan's energy industry is in transition following the nuclear disaster at Fukushima, but the nation's ruling party has said that alternative energy alone cannot make up for the power generated by the nation's nuclear plants.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe favors restarting the nuclear plants under safety guidelines revised after multiple meltdowns in Fukushima following the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami, contending that resource-scarce Japan cannot afford not to.
Others, including two former prime minister, are urging leaders to phase out nuclear energy entirely while there is still overwhelming public support.
Last month First Solar announced that its third-quarter net income more than doubled and the company raised its profit outlook for the year.
Shares of First Solar Inc. fell 9 cents to $64.19 in afternoon trading.