Deals to develop Sizewell C signed between EDF and Chinese company CGN
PUBLISHED: 17:43 29 September 2016 | UPDATED: 17:43 29 September 2016
Chinese backers yesterday signed important financial agreements connected to the construction of Suffolk’s yet-to-be-approved Sizewell C nuclear power station.
The agreement for the development phase of the £14billion project came as contracts for the Hinkley Point C nuclear power station in Somerset were signed in London.
The signings took place between the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Greg Clark, EDF group chairman and CEO Jean Bernard-Levy and CGN chairman He Yu.
He Yu said: “The signing of these agreements signifies CGN’s commitment to the UK as one of the world’s leading developers and operators of nuclear power.
“This flagship programme is a triple win for China, Britain, and France and is a culmination of years of co-operation between the three countries.
“CGN looks forward to providing UK consumers with safe, reliable and sustainable energy and maximising opportunities for UK suppliers and the UK workforce.”
CGN said it had signed all final agreements for the Hinkley Point C Project (HPC) and agreements relating to two new power stations, Sizewell C and Bradwell (BRB) in Essex.
A statement said: “This means that all the necessary government and commercial approvals have been completed for HPC and the project can now move forward.
“At the same time, the agreements signed today will also enable preparatory work to begin on BRB, allowing CGN to put its HPR1000 technology through the UK’s generic design assessment (GDA) process.”
EDF and CGN have an agreement to develop Sizewell C to a final investment decision with a view to build and operate two EPR reactors.
During the development phase EDF will take an 80% share and CGN will take a 20% share.
Justin Bowden, the GMB union’s national secretary for energy said: “With collective sighs of relief all round, it is fantastic news that the Hinkley deal is finally signed and work can start on this vital piece of UK infrastructure.
“The formal go-ahead for Hinkley is the first serious sign that UK plc is open for business post-Brexit and holding a secret ceremony did not do justice to such an historic event.
“Attention must now straight away shift to Bradwell B and Sizewell C.”
HPC will supply electricity to meet 7% of the UK’s future electricity needs.
Mr Levy said: “Contracts signed today with the British Government and with our historic partner CGN are the result of years of hard work of the teams which have brought us to this point.
“The project is of strategic importance for EDF Group and the nuclear industry. Now the next phase is underway. EDF, its partners and suppliers are ready and dedicated to the successful construction of Hinkley Point C.”
Mr Clark said it was a “crucial moment” in the UK’s first new nuclear power station for a generation and followed new measures from Government to strengthen security and ownership.
He said: “Britain needs to upgrade its supplies of energy, and we have always been clear that nuclear power stations like Hinkley play an important part in ensuring our future low-carbon energy security.”
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