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Chinese nuclear giant interested in canned Moorside site

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A China General Nuclear Power Group (CGN) senior representative has hinted that the company may be interested in purchasing the Moorside nuclear site after NuGen pulled out of the project earlier this year.

Speaking at the Nuclear Industry Association conference in London, CGN UK chief operating officer Robert Davies alluded to potential CGN interest in taking over the former NuGen site in Moorside.  

When pressed on the CGNs interest in taking over, Daives said that “Moorside is a very smart site”.   

“To make the UK successful in nuclear, we need to go towards a fleet effect, and Moorside is a nice site,” Davies added. 

“With the demise of NuGen there is a gap in the UK’s nuclear programme; the expected sequence of reactors coming down the line has been interrupted.”

The site at Moorside is still designated for a nuclear powerplant, following the exit of Toshiba’s nuclear power company NuGen.  

The new plant had been due to provide 7% of the UKs energy needs.  

Toshiba had been looking to sell the project onto another developer for the last 18 months, after their nuclear division Westinghouse, who formed part of the NuGen joint venture tasked with the project, collapsed in March 2017.  

CGN missed out on being the preferred bidder for the site to South Korea’s state-owned Korean Electric Power Corporation (Kepco), but talks fell through. 

The site is currently under the control of the UK Nuclear Decommissioning Authority.  

CGN is already involved in the UK nuclear power industry, being part of a joint venture to deliver Hinkley Point C.  

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Readers' comments (2)

  • This is such a disaster for the UK. Nuclear has to be allowed to die off. China will be a horrible game play over the next 40 years as it becomes more involved in global affairs. This thing will be used as a pawn.
    Best to leave the Chinese out of the uks energy play.
    Lets just stick to local players and renewable energy and hopefully things that uk pension companies will want to invest in.

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  • The sale of British Energy to EDF put paid to any chance the UK has of producing 'domestically produced' nuclear new build projects. The lack of commitment off the back of Sizewell B, having built a successful fleet of AGR reactors and starting to recognise economies of scale and similarity (as alluded to in the article), put paid to a lot of the "UK Nuclear Professional" workforce.

    The mere concept of anything being entirely domestically produced and run in this modern age of international organisations and foreign investment is frankly ridiculous. Any comparable infrastructure project in the UK requires a conglomerate of international funding to not only spread the cost, but spread the risk.

    The Nuclear industry is a highly regulated industry. I have utmost confidence that the ONR has the country's best interest at heart, especially with regards to the perceived or actual threat from China.

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