EDF Energy’s £14billion reactor project in Somerset faces further delays of at least two years for the European Commission to consider if the French state-backed company is being granted illegal state aid by Britain, a UK rival warned yesterday.
EDF is demanding generous subsidies, funded by levies on British consumers’ bills, as well as loan guarantees from the Government to build the UK’s first nuclear reactor for decades at Hinkley Point. Ministers had assumed that Brussels would quickly rubber-stamp any deal to allow the company to start construction.
But the UK’s Scottish & Southern Electricity Company claimed that EDF Energy’s proliferating demands for Government financial support will force the EC to deliberate until 2015 at the earliest. The Commission’s decision would be under threat of a judicial review, which would take years to complete.
The Hinkley Point reactors will not be up and running until 2021 at the earliest, four years later than the company had originally promised.
from The Times, 22nd February 2013
In this connection Energy Fair formally reported on 24th February to the EU Competitions Commissioner the implications of providing EDF with state-sponsored billions in subsidies to build and run nuclear plants in the UK.
Brigitte Renner-Loquaez, head of the EC’s competitions directorate, has replied: “We are asking the UK authorities the reasons why they do not consider the alleged aid to be unlawful aid.”
from The Guardian 25th February, 2013