Nu­clear power sta­tion in UK set for go-ahead

China Daily (USA) - - TOP NEWS - By CHRIS PETERSON in Lon­don To con­tact the reporter at chris@mail.chi­nadai­lyuk. com

UK Prime Min­is­ter Theresa May is ready to an­nounce the go-ahead for the 18 bil­lion pound nu­clear power sta­tion, to be built in south­west Eng­land us­ing French tech­nol­ogy with Chi­nese fi­nanc­ing, Bri­tish news­pa­pers reported.

The Daily Tele­graph said May was ready to call France’s Pres­i­dent Fran­cois Hol­lande on Mon­day to in­form him she was ready to give the project the green light, but the call was can­celed at the last minute be­cause of fresh ques­tions from Bri­tain’s Depart­ment of En­ergy.

The Daily Mir­ror reported that the an­nounce­ment would come as early as Thurs­day but that Bri­tain would be seek­ing mod­i­fi­ca­tions to some as­pects of the orig­i­nal agree­ment.

Bloomberg News cited an uniden­ti­fied of­fi­cial in Paris as say­ing May had al­ready in­formed France that the project can go ahead, although it would be sub­ject to un­spec­i­fied con­di­tions.

May shocked diplo­mats in France and China when, only days af­ter she took over from David Cameron, who quit shortly af­ter he lost a ref­er­en­dum on EU mem­ber­ship, she an­nounced she was de­lay­ing ap­proval of the project un­til Septem­ber.

Tonight her of­fice in Down­ing Street would only con­firm that a de­ci­sion would be an­nounced this month.

The Fi­nan­cial Times said May’s of­fi­cials were con­cerned about fi­nan­cial as­pects of the deal, as well as se­cu­rity is­sues.

The deal, orig­i­nally put to­gether by Cameron and his Chan­cel­lor, Ge­orge Os­bourne, in­cluded a clause that Chi­nese tech­nol­ogy would be used to build a fur­ther nu­clear power plant at Brad­well-on-Sea in eastern Eng­land.

China, which has pledged to in­vest around 40 bil­lion pounds in the UK in the wake of Pres­i­dent Xi Jin­ping’s suc­cess­ful state visit in Oc­to­ber last year.

Both sides hailed the be­gin­ning of a ``golden era’’ in Sino-Bri­tish re­la­tions, a phrase re­peated by May when she met Xi for the first time at the G20 Lead­ers Sum­mit in Hangzhou ear­lier this month.

Xi told May China un­der­stood why May needed time to eval­u­ate agree­ments struck by her pre­de­ces­sor, and in­di­cated his govern­ment would be pa­tient.

The Fi­nan­cial Times said May could give her ap­proval with the con­di­tion that the Brad­well clause be treated as a separate deal, to be rene­go­ti­ated.

Hink­ley Point will gen­er­ate 25,000 jobs and sup­ply power for 7 mil­lion house­holds. China is fi­nanc­ing a third of the deal.

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