The decision to approve the Hinkley Point nuclear power plant may raise scrutiny on Chinese investors that want to expand their atomic portfolio in the U.K. The U.K. government will take a “special share” in all future nuclear projects giving it power to block changes in ownership that could impinge on national security, according to a statement on Thursday. For China, whose 33.5 percent ownership in Hinkley was the subject of security concern, the new rules may erect higher hurdles for reactor projects in Sizewell and Bradwell, which uses Chinese technology. “The chance the Chinese are prevented from going ahead with Bradwell must be higher today than it was yesterday,” said Stephen Hunt, U.K. utilities analyst at Barclays Capital Services Ltd., in a phone interview. The decision to tighten the rules highlights Prime Minister Theresa May’s security concerns about Chinese access to critical U.K. infrastructure. The 18-billion pound ($24 billion) Hinkley project is one-third funded by state-owned China General Nuclear Power Corp., which signed a deal in October with Electricite de France SA at Sizewell and another at Bradwell, both on the eastern coast.
Bloomberg 15th Sept 2016 read more »
China is to begin developing a new nuclear power station in Essex after the Government heralded a new wave of UK reactors by approving the £18bn Hinkley Point plant in Somerset. Chinese state nuclear firm CGN will fund one-third of Hinkley, which is led by French state energy giant EDF, in return for the chance to build its own design of reactor at Bradwell with EDF’s support. Although ministers made no mention of Bradwell in their announcement, sources told the Telegraph that CGN had privately received Government assurance its plans, which were endorsed by the previous administration, were still welcome. CGN said it was “delighted” by the Hinkley decision which would allow it to “move forward and deliver” Bradwell. It is understood the firm hopes to begin the process of seeking UK safety approval for its Hualong One reactor design in the autumn. EDF has previously said such a plant could begin construction as early as 2022, subject to approval by UK regulators.
Telegraph 15th Sept 2016 read more »