Lord Mandelson has announced the sale of the operations of the UK Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA), for an undisclosed sum.
Mandelson, said: “As the UK moves towards an era of nuclear new build, this sale will increase efficiency, competition and value for money for the taxpayer in the decommissioning and clean up work of old nuclear power stations.”
In a written statement to the House of Lords, he said: “The process will take the form of two stages, an initial stage which will allow bidders access to an information Memorandum document written by Greenhill & Co and request first round bids.
“Following this, a second stage, will allow a smaller number of interested parties access to detailed due diligence and put forward a further more detailed bid. It is the intention of Her Majesty’s Government to complete this transaction before the summer recess.”
Chairman of the UK Atomic Energy Authority Lady Judge, said: “We believe that the UK and international nuclear decommissioning markets represent an exciting opportunity for UKAEA Limited to build a larger and more broadly based nuclear services company, based on UKAEA Limited’s core skills, track record and brand.
“The proposed sale will provide UKAEA Limited with a new ownership structure to help deliver its strategic plans and greater commercial focus on its operations,” she said.
Shadow Energy and Climate Change Secretary Greg Clark said the: “Timing of this sale raises concerns. Britain needs to be building up its nuclear capabilities and I am concerned that this sale may be being made to help the Government out of a short-term cash crisis at the expense of our long-term competitiveness.
“Government has awarded contracts worth millions of pounds to UKAEA Limited for decommissioning nuclear power stations and is reliant on the company to deliver them. The Government must have cast-iron guarantees that any buyer will not hold the taxpayer to ransom in future for further payments for decommissioning Dounreay, Harwell and Winfrith,” he said.