seeks financial help from French government for Hinkley Point
will not go ahead with the contentious £18bn Hinkley Point
C nuclear project near Burnham-On-Sea unless it wins further financial
support from the French government, according to a leaked letter
by the firms chief executive.
Lévy says in a letter seen by the Financial Times newspaper
that he was negotiating to "obtain commitments from the state
to help secure our financial position".
added he would "not engage in the [Hinkley Point] project
before these conditions are met", without going into detail
on how this might occur.
newspaper reports that two people close to EDF said the French
state could take a stake in the Hinkley Point C project, or possibly
participate in a capital raising by the company, although they
said that nothing had been finalised.
government already has an 85 per cent stake in EDF. The letter
by Mr Lévy was intended to reassure EDF employees amid
growing disquiet over its plans to build two new nuclear reactors
at the Hinkley Point power station for electricity generation.
Piquemal, EDFs finance director, resigned last week over
concerns that the project could threaten the companys future,
as reported here.
the Cour des Comptes, Frances state audit body, said on
Thursday that the "complexity of both funding and carrying
out" Hinkley Point should cause EDF to ask itself if it was
the right decision, as reported here.
have raised concerns about the £18bn cost given EDFs
stretched balance sheet. The company has €37bn of net debt.
Top, Hinkley Point power station with Brent Knoll in the background
(pic Mark Robinson)