The government and EDF have signed a historic agreement for the UK’s first new nuclear power station for a generation.
During a signing ceremony in London, business secretary Greg Clark, EDF chairman and chief executive Jean-Bernard Levy and China General Nuclear Power Corporation (CGN) chairman He Yu signed the final documentation to enable Hinkley Point C to go ahead.
The historic event follows the government’s decision to proceed with the project following a comprehensive review and revised agreement with EDF.
The government said that the signing of the Contract for Difference and Secretary of State Investor Agreement for Hinkley Point C marked a significant step forward for a new era of nuclear power in the UK.
“Signing the Contract for Difference for Hinkley Point C is a crucial moment in the UK’s first new nuclear power station for a generation and follows new measures put in place by government to strengthen security and ownership,” said Clark.
“Britain needs to upgrade its supplies of energy, and we have always been clear that nuclear power stations like Hinkley play an important part in ensuring our future low-carbon energy security.”
The event was also attended by the French minister of foreign affairs and international development Jean-Marc Ayrault and National Energy Administration of China minister Nur Bekri.
EDF said that the plant’s two EPR reactors would provide reliable, low carbon electricity to meet 7% of the UK’s future electricity needs and that its construction was a major step forward in the fight against climate change.
The French energy giant went on to say that Hinkley Point C would be competitive with all other future energy choices and it had been shown to offer consumers value for money. It also said that it now expected 64% of the £18bn project’s value to be spent in the UK and it would create 26,000 jobs and apprenticeships.
The signed agreements will now enable the development of nuclear power stations at Sizewell C in Suffolk and Bradwell B in Essex.
EDF also confirmed again that Hinkley is due to start producing electricity in 2025 and that the construction cost to first operation remains at £18bn in nominal terms.
The Hinkley Point C contractual documents are available here.