Five board members of French state-controlled utility EDF are petitioning to have the courts annul last month’s board decision to push ahead with the controversial Hinkley Point power project in the UK. Five rebels on the board, all of whom represent the EDF unions, said on Wednesday that the decision should be invalidated because Jean-Bernard Lévy, the chief executive, did not tell them that the UK government planned to delay its decision on the plant. Law firm Alain Levy, which represents the five union board members, said on Wednesday that it had filed a complaint with the Paris commercial court, adding that the case would be heard on September 5. EDF declined to comment. EDF has admitted that Jean-Bernard Lévy knew that a signing ceremony scheduled for the project site on the day after the board meeting had been pushed back by the UK. But the company insists that Mr Lévy did not know that a full review would take place.
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Tensions over Britain’s proposed nuclear power station at Hinkley Point have flared again in France as five worker representatives on the board of the French power company EDF filed a challenge to overturn the company’s controversial decision to build the nuclear reactors. The employee representatives believe EDF’s chief executive “did not communicate crucial information about a major project” he was aware of before the 28 July meeting at which the board of directors approved the £18bn project to build Britain’s first new nuclear reactors in decades, their law firm told Agence France-Presse. The complaint also protests against the participation of several directors “with conflicts of interests”, according to the law firm Alain Levy. The challenge claims that some of the EDF board members who voted in favour of Hinkley Point represent companies that are EDF customers and could benefit from the UK contract. French firms Bouygues and Vallourec have denied that members of their boards who are also on the board of EDF had a conflict of interest in their Hinkley Point vote.
Guardian 31st Aug 2016 read more »
Beijing has urged Theresa May to make “wise” choices that help write “a new chapter” of UK-China relations when she flies into Hangzhou later this week for the G20 summit amid tensions over the controversial Hinkley Point C nuclear project. The so-called “golden era” of UK-China ties – sealed under her predecessor, David Cameron – has threatened to unravel since May took power in July. Shortly after taking office the British Prime Minister angered Beijing by announcing that approval of the £18bn ($23.5bn) nuclear plant, in which China was to hold a one-third stake, would be delayed, apparently as a result of security concerns over Chinese involvement. The simmering Hinkley row will be hanging over May’s first trip to China for the two-day gathering of the world’s major economies, which begins on Sunday.
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