A government-led rescue of French nuclear group Areva and the wider atomic energy industry may cost the state as much as 10 billion euros ($10.45 billion), but political support is almost certain whoever wins the presidential election in May. While taxpayers will ultimately pick up the huge bill, the main election contenders – from the Socialists and conservatives to the far-right National Front – broadly back the bailout, which involves splitting up Areva. On top of its dire financial state, Areva is beset by technical, regulatory and legal problems. But given its importance to a nuclear industry that generates three quarters of France’s electricity and employs 220,000 people, the next government probably has little choice but to stand by the scheme hatched under outgoing Socialist President Francois Hollande.
Reuters 4th Jan 2017 read more »