Hitachi is in talks with the Japanese and UK governments about potential state financing for the multibillion-pound nuclear power station it is planning to build in Wales. Government equity, loans and credit guarantees are among the options being explored by the Japanese conglomerate and officials in London and Tokyo, according to people briefed on the matter. Any UK public finance for the power plant at Wylfa in Anglesey would represent a major change in policy; the British government has for years resisted the idea of exposing taxpayers’ money to the heavy expense and high risks involved in building nuclear reactors. Philip Hammond, UK chancellor, is in Japan this week, and Greg Clark, business secretary, is expected to visit next week, with the Hitachi nuclear project high on the agenda for both. Following a meeting with government officials and business leaders in Tokyo on Thursday, Mr Hammond that financing for the nuclear power project in Wales could total around £12bn, of which a portion would be contributed by Japan. Negotiations are continuing but bankers indicated the Japanese contribution could be on the order of ¥1tn ($8.5bn). Horizon says the cost of Wylfa will not be determined until its reactor design is approved by regulators and supply chain plans firm up but the company is aiming for it to be less than the £18bn price tag for Hinkley.
FT 16th Dec 2016 read more »
The Government could invest billions of pounds in the Hitachi-owned Horizon project to build a new nuclear plant on Anglesey, under plans being discussed with Japan. The proposal, which could see the UK fund 25pc of the project alongside significant loans from the Japanese government, is one of a number of options under consideration as the two countries seek to help Hitachi finance the plant. Chancellor Philip Hammond, who met business leaders and Japanese officials in Tokyo on Thursday, said that Japanese government-related financing for the project could total £12bn but that negotiations were still on-going. The likely cost of the proposed twin-reactor development at Wylfa has not been disclosed but a source close to the negotiations insisted a Reuters report that put the figure at £19bn was wide of the mark. Horizon is under pressure to make the project cheaper than EDF’s £18bn Hinkley Point plant, which is reliant on a 35-year subsidy contract from UK consumers and has faced widespread criticism over its high cost. Horizon has however made clear that the same funding structure used by French state-controlled EDF for Hinkley will not be sufficient to secure private investment in Wylfa. The Nikkei, which first reported the details of the possible Government-backed financing arrangements, said Hitachi might eventually shoulder about 10pc of the cost of the project.
Telegraph 15th Dec 2016 read more »
The government is in talks with Japanese officials about taking a direct stake in a new nuclear power station in north Wales that could amount to several billions of pounds. The project to build two new reactors at an existing site at Wylfa, on Anglesey, is being developed by Hitachi. During a trip by Philip Hammond, the chancellor, to Tokyo yesterday, Japanese officials said that the country’s government and Hitachi would provide about 1 trillion yen (£6.8 billion) of financing for the Welsh station through loans and loan guarantees. Sources familiar with the talks told The Times that the UK government was considering taking a direct equity stake in the project, run by Hitachi’s UK subsidiary Horizon Nuclear Power, of up to 25 per cent.
The Times 16th Dec 2016 read more »
Hitachi Ltd and the Japanese government have reached a deal worth around 1 trillion yen ($8.5 billion) to fund a UK nuclear power plant project, according to a government official. The Japan Bank for International Cooperation and the Development Bank of Japan will provide financing for the project, the official told Reuters. The funding plans are a boost for the project, one of several new nuclear plants planned in the UK, which wants to replacing its ageing fleet of atomic reactors. Hitachi’s Horizon unit plans to construct at least 5.4 gigawatts of new nuclear capacity across two sites in Britain. The funds will be provided for the first plant planned at Wylfa Newydd in Wales.
STV 15th Dec 2016 read more »
Plans for a £12bn nuclear power plant in Wales has been a focus for talks between the UK chancellor and the Japanese government. Philip Hammond said he hoped more discussions mean “we are able to move forward in the new year”. Japanese-owned Horizon Nuclear Power wants to submit planning applications for the Wylfa Newydd reactors on Anglesey in 2017. Energy Secretary Greg Clark will fly out to Japan for more talks next week. Talking to reporters in Tokyo, Mr Hammond said the companies involved in the Wylfa Newydd bid had been “trying to put together a financing package that meets our requirements”. “We are very grateful to the Japanese system for the way it has engaged with our particular needs and think we are making good progress.”
BBC 16th Dec 2016 read more »
The government is considering offering financial assistance through state-affiliated banks for projects won by Japanese companies for nuclear power plant construction in Britain, sources said Thursday. Under study is a plan for the Japan Bank for International Cooperation and the Development Bank of Japan to invest in and provide loans to local companies that build and operate nuclear power stations, the sources said. The Japanese government hopes to establish a framework for financial assistance totaling about ¥1 trillion within 2017 also by asking major Japanese and British private financial institutions to participate in the scheme, according to the sources. Visiting British Chancellor of the Exchequer Philip Hammond told reporters in Tokyo on Thursday that Britain is holding talks with the Japanese government, Hitachi Ltd. and Toshiba Corp. on a financial support framework for nuclear power plant construction projects in his country. British Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Secretary Greg Clark plans to visit Japan as early as next week and hold meetings with officials of Hitachi, Toshiba and the JBIC. Under the envisaged scheme, the Japanese government expects to offer financial assistance to Horizon Nuclear Power Ltd., a unit of Hitachi, and NuGeneration Ltd., which is under the wing of Toshiba.
Japan Times 16th Dec 2016 read more »
A trillion yen (£6.79bn) funding package looks set to be agreed between the Japanese Government and Hitachi to help fund Wylfa Newydd. Sources say that negotiators are closing in on the deal which would be one of biggest steps forward for the new nuclear power station project on Anglesey, which will cost around £10bn to develop.
Wales Online 15th Dec 2016 read more »