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EDF warns Brexit could delay Hinkley

EDF Hinkley C

The new Hinkley Point C nuclear power station faces delays and higher costs as a result of Brexit, the project’s developer EDF has told a committee of MPs.

EDF said that the government must ensure businesses can continue to draw on the European Union (EU) skills base in written evidence to the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy select committee. The Committee has been holding an inquiry called “Leaving the EU: negotiation priorities for energy and climate change policy”.

EDF was asked how possible new restrictions on trade and movement of labour affect the business, including investment into energy infrastructure. It replied that although much of the investment it needs to make in terms of materials and labour can be found within the UK, it is also dependent on the import of goods and it will need to draw on EU and global labour markets.

“These requirements will include critical goods and services in the nuclear supply chain and specialist nuclear skills. There is a risk that restrictions on trade and movement of labour will increase the costs of essential new infrastructure developments and could delay their delivery,” it said.

It urged the government to ensure it has continued access to EU skilled workers and also improve the immigration process for workers from outside the EU, as well as avoid tariffs on its most important supplies and services.

The committee is now taking oral evidence as part of its ongoing inquiry.

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