The head of energy giant ScottishPower has waded into the row over Hinkley Point, insisting that the controversial subsidy deal for EDF’s proposed nuclear plant should be renegotiated because it is too expensive. Keith Anderson, the firm’s chief corporate officer, said the deal, provisionally agreed by the Government in 2013 following lengthy negotiations, no longer made sense in the light of lower gas and offshore wind costs. “It looks like a contract that was written five years ago on a business case that was probably pulled together 10 years ago. It looks out of line with what’s going on in the market now,” he said. In an interview with Telegraph, Mr Anderson praised Theresa May’s “brave” decision to review the £18bn project and urged her to look at it in its entirety, not just her apparent concerns over Chinese state nuclear firms’ involvement.
Telegraph 3rd Sept 2016 read more »
Letter John Busby: BRITAIN does not fear a “yawning energy gap” as its generation requirement is down about 15% since the 2005 peak. The deployment of LED street lighting, solar PV road signs, more efficient appliances and distributed energy will continue to reduce central demand and with it the market for subsidised nuclear. Distributors will buy cheaper alternatives to nuclear unless forced to buy it first by government deals with EDF/CNG, Hitachi and Toshiba.
Sunday Times 4th Sept 2016 read more »
EDF leaders are now in such a state of panic over their Hinkley C proposals that desperate messages were being sent out to tell the British Government that they need to take a £6 billion equity share in the proposal. Signals are coming from Downing Street that the Government wants to decouple Hinkley C from the ‘deal’ with China allowing them to build their own nuclear power plant at Bradwell. The Chinese have responded that they would no longer be interested in funding their (approx one third) share of Hinkley C. EDF’s desperate plea that the British Government take over the Chinese share in Hinkley C is unlikely to be welcomed by Treasury officials who would (or at least should) see that as tantamout to locking in the British state to shovelling money down a black hole, with a lot more inevitably following the first £6 billion equity.
Dave Toke’s Blog 3rd Sept 2016 read more »
Theresa May has ordered the security services to review whether it is safe to let China gain a foothold in Britain’s nuclear industry. The Prime Minister has confirmed she will ask the Government’s National Security Council to consider the risks posed by China before deciding whether to let the communist giant take a £6 billion stake in a planned new nuclear plant at Hinkley Point, in Somerset. A linked deal that would allow China to build a new nuclear power station at Bradwell, in Essex, was also halted. As Mrs May prepared for a showdown with President Xi Jinping over the issue today, she also hinted she does not fully trust the autocratic regime in Beijing. The Prime Minister halted the controversial Hinkley Point deal shortly after taking office in July, saying she needed to review ‘all the evidence’. Asked yesterday if this included convening the National Security Council to consider the threat, she said: ‘I’m going to do exactly as you said in your question.’ The public acknowledgement that Mrs May sees the deal as a potential security threat risks overshadowing her first face-to-face talks with President Xi at the G20 summit in Hangzhou today, when she will try to persuade him to carry on investing in post-Brexit Britain.
Daily Mail 4th Sept 2016 read more »
Theresa May has made the bombshell admission that her officials are specifically reviewing security around the Hinkley nuclear project in which the Chinese government is involved. The Prime Minister made clear while speaking at the G20 Summit in Hangzhou that the National Security Council would explore whether Hinkley could have an adverse impact on security.
Independent 4th Sept 2016 read more »
The Prime Minister has said it is a “golden era” for UK-China relations, despite a row with Beijing over the delayed Hinkley Point nuclear power station.
LBC 3rd Sept 2016 read more »
British Prime Minister Theresa May on Sunday defended her decision to delay a partly Chinese-funded nuclear power deal, despite it causing diplomatic tension with China as she landed in the country to attend a G20 summit. In July, May upset Chinese officials by delaying a $24billion project that would see French firm EDF (EDF.PA) build Britain’s first new nuclear power plant in decades with the help of $8 billion from China. The decision caught investors by surprise and has cast doubt over whether May, who took power in July following Britain’s vote to leave the European Union, will continue to court China as a major source of infrastructure investment. “This is the way I operate,” May told reporters on board her official plane on the way to Hangzhou for the summit, which will include a one-to-one with Chinese President Xi Jinping. The summit is May’s first visit to China. “I don’t just come in and say ‘I’m going to take a decision’- I actually look at the evidence, weigh up that evidence, take the advice and consider that and come to my decision.”
Reuters 4th Sept 2016 read more »
A senior Minister last night voiced concern at the ‘Rasputin-like’ influence over Theresa May held by her long-standing right-hand man, confidant, spin doctor and fixer, Nick Timothy. Downing Street chief of staff Timothy has been credited with Mrs May’s two main policy initiatives since she became Prime Minister – blocking the nuclear power plant deal with China and bringing back grammar schools. But some Ministers have expressed surprise at the way they say the formidable Timothy is demanding a big say in all key Government decisions.
Daily Mail 4th Sept 2016 read more »