The Daily Telegraph

EDF confirms fall in French nuclear output

- By Rachel Millard

EDF has downgraded its French nuclear power output and profit expectatio­ns for the year, following a string of outages across its fleet.

The French state-owned firm said it expects annual output to come in at the “lower end” of a previously announced 280-300 terawatt-hour range.

The fall in output is expected to dent profits by about €29bn (£25bn), it added. At the end of July, it had forecast a profit hit of €24bn from output problems. EDF owns 56 nuclear reactors across France but more than half are offline because of maintenanc­e and corrosion. The problems have added to the pressure on European energy markets amid cuts to Russian supplies of gas following its war on Ukraine.

Power prices have soared to record highs on the Continent and in the UK, adding to the major cost of living crisis driven by high gas costs.

France has been a net importer of electricit­y for the first time in recent months, buying power from Britain and others. EDF plans to restart all of the reactors this winter, Agnès Pannierrun­acher, France’s energy minister, said at the start of this month.

Most are set to restart by the end of December with others due to follow in January and February.

France is in the process of taking full control of EDF, offering EDF’S minority shareholde­rs about €10bn for the 16pc it does not already own.

In January, the state ordered EDF to sell more cheap nuclear power to rivals, helping the government to cap the increase in power prices for households at 4pc. France will limit price rises for households for 2023 at 15pc.

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