Centrica writes off £200m to quit nuclear power project

Mark Leftly
Sunday 02 December 2012 01:00
Comments

British Gas owner Centrica is expected to write off £200m when it pulls out of the country's nuclear new build programme in the new year.

Centrica has the option of taking a 20 per cent stake in building nuclear power stations at Hinkley Point in Somerset and Sizewell in Suffolk alongside French group EDF.

However, chief executive Sam Laidlaw, right, is almost certain to confirm that Centrica will leave the project at the "final investment decision"in January, having spent virtually all its share of the £1bn in upfront costs that the companies had budgeted to the end of 2012.

This will mean that there is no British involvement left in the three consortiums established to build nuclear plants to bridge the country's impending energy gap. EDF is likely to seek a new partner and was cheered last week when Hinkley Point was granted the UK's first nuclear site licence in 25 years.

Centrica fears it cannot make the financial numbers work, as the cost of reactors has gone up from £4.5bn to £7bn each. It is likely to focus on US expansion instead.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in