An $18bn deal has been signed by the British government, French energy giant EDF and Chinese firm CGN for the construction of the Hinkely Point C nuclear power station in Somerset, England.
The 3,200 MWe nuclear power station with two EPR reactors is projected to provide power to up to almost 6 million homes and have a lifetime of sixty years.
It will be the UK’s first new nuclear power station in decades.
The formal signing took place between the UK Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Greg Clark, EDF group Chairman and CEO Jean Bernard-Levy and CGN Chairman He Yu.
French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault and the Administrator of the Chinese National Energy Administration Nur Bekri also attended the ceremony.
According to a statement by EDF, the plant will begin producing electricity in 2025.
Greg Clark, Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy said:
“Signing the Contract for Difference for Hinkley Point C is a crucial moment in the UK’s first new nuclear power station for a generation and follows new measures put in place by Government to strengthen security and ownership.
“Britain needs to upgrade its supplies of energy, and we have always been clear that nuclear power stations like Hinkley play an important part in ensuring our future low-carbon energy security.”
EDF Group Chairman Jean-Bernard Levy said:
“Contracts signed today with the British Government and with our historic partner CGN are the result of years of hard work of the teams which have brought us to this point.
“The project is of strategic importance for EDF Group and the nuclear industry. All of the employees of EDF Group around the world can be proud of the progress we have made. Now the next phase is underway. EDF, its partners and suppliers are ready and dedicated to the successful construction of Hinkley Point C.”
EDF Energy CEO Vincent de Rivaz said:
“Hinkley Point C will kickstart Britain’s nuclear revival. It has overcome obstacles and challenges which will benefit our next nuclear projects in Britain. This huge investment has been made possible by the consistent policies of successive Governments to provide secure, affordable, low carbon electricity.
“I want to thank our team, our suppliers, trade unions and the people of Somerset for their dedication, determination and patience. Their support has been vital to our success.”