By Ria Novosti
The Japanese government announced on Friday that a double natural disaster that hit Japan in March could cost the country up to 16.9 trillion yen (about $210 bln), the Kyodo news agency reported.
The estimates do not include the damages from a nuclear crisis at the Fukushima nuclear power plant, the government said.
A 9.0-magnitude quake struck off Japan’s northeast coast on March 11, triggering a tsunami and explosions in the Fukushima nuclear power plant, which caused the worst nuclear crisis since Chernobyl in 1986.
According to Japanese scientists, the tsunami triggered by the quake washed over 561 square kilometers in 23 prefectures. Huge waves reached 10 kilometers (6 miles) inland destroying everything on their way.
The disaster destroyed over 151,000 buildings and killed at least 15,000 people, while 9,893 people still remain unaccounted for.
The government has previously said the damage from the disaster could total $184 billion.