April 23, 2016
EDF 'to delay further its approval of Hinkley Point C by several months'

French energy group EDF is to postpone its final approval of the £18bn Hinkley Point C nuclear project near Burnham-On-Sea by several months, according to media reports.

Bloomberg Business News reported on Friday evening (April 22nd) that EDF will delay its final investment decision on the nuclear power plant "by several months", according to a person familiar with the matter.

It comes as Chief Executive Officer Jean-Bernard Levy has reportedly decided to push back the decision in order to consult with employees, the person said, asking not to be identified.

Labour unions threatened on Thursday to take the company to court if workers are not consulted.

There has been speculation about the future of the Hinkley Point plant since EDF’s Chief Financial Officer Thomas Piquemal resigned last month, saying it would put the company under too much financial strain.

While French Economy Minister Emmanuel Macron, who backs the project, said the government would re-capitalize the company if needed, some workers remained opposed.

The final decision has been repeatedly delayed amid doubts over the viability of the project, even as the utility formed a partnership with China General Nuclear Power Corp and secured guaranteed power prices from the U.K. government at about twice the current market rate for 35 years.

EDF’s finances have been strained by falling power prices and rising competition, which threaten its future earnings.


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