UK looks to remove China’s CGN from nuclear power projects. The British government is exploring ways to remove China’s state-owned nuclear energy company from all future power projects in the UK. The change in mood will affect CGNs role in Sizewell and Bradwell. The UK-China Collaboration on nuclear power dates back to an agreement made by David Cameron in 2015. The deal envisaged CGN becoming a 20% partner in Sizewell and sealed Chinese investment in Hinkley. It also envisaged CGN becoming lead developer at Bradwell. One person familiar with the matter said the idea of CGN building a plant 50km from London was a non-starter. Another person said London was hoping that CGN would withdraw from both projects without confrontation.
FT 25th July 2021 read more »
Britain is exploring ways to remove China’s state-owned nuclear energy company China General Nuclear Power Group CGN) from all future power projects in the UK, the Financial Times reported on Sunday, citing people familiar with the plans.
Reuters 25th July 2021 read more »
Bloomberg 25th July 2021 read more »
City AM 26thy July 2021 read more »
China’s state-owned nuclear energy company could be blocked from all future power projects in the UK, with ministers understood to be investigating ways to prevent its involvement. The move would exclude China General Nuclear (CGN) from the consortium planning to build the £20bn Sizewell C nuclear plant on the Suffolk coast, as well as one in Bradwell-on-Sea in Essex. A Whitehall source confirmed a report by the Financial Times that first revealed the government is exploring ways of removing CGN from future projects.
Guardian 26th July 2021 read more »
Independent 26th July 2021 read more »
Daily Mail 26th July 2021 read more »
Evening Standard 25th July 2021 read more »
Telegraph 26th July 2021 read more »
British ministers are concerned about CGN’s involvement in critical UK infrastructure and believe Sizewell would be viable without the involvement of the Chinese company. This is despite EDF using the technical input of CGN engineers on Hinkley Point C, which will operate using European Pressurised Reactor technology, a Franco-German design. CGN’s Taishan nuclear power plant in southern China is the first in the world to operate using EPR technology and more than 100 CGN engineers have been involved with Hinkley Point C, around 50 on site in Somerset. But one nuclear expert expressed nervousness about a lack of CGN involvement in future projects involving EPRs: “It was the Chinese who built the [first operational] EPR.” The removal of CGN from Sizewell could nevertheless help EDF attract North American infrastructure investors to the project, which nuclear industry leaders say would otherwise be problematic with Chinese involvement. The US put CGN on an export blacklist in 2019 alleging it had stolen US technology for military purposes, while the Trump administration warned the UK against Chinese involvement in nuclear power. Theresa May, the former prime minister, came within a “whisker” of forcing CGN out of Hinkley Point C, according to one UK government figure. May ordered a review, which allowed the Somerset project to go ahead but only with certain stringent conditions attached. The government refused to confirm or deny that the government no longer wanted CGN taking part in the nuclear programme. “All nuclear projects in the UK are conducted under robust and independent regulation to meet the UK’s rigorous legal, regulatory and national security requirements, ensuring our interests are protected,” a spokesperson said.
Nikkei Asian Review 26th July 2021 read more »