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Why must we rely on foreign imports?

First we get the good news. After the twenty-year nuclear moratorium, the politicians have given the go-ahead for construction of new nuclear plants in this country.

Then the bad news.

The only company declaring an interest in constructing these plants is EDF, otherwise known as the French nationalised electricity industry – the equivalent of the CEGB, which we dismantled and carved up a generation ago, to "free up" the energy sector.

As I questioned in a previous letter, (NCE 18 March 2004), do we still have the expertise, or capacity, to compete for this work?

Our designers and contractors appear to be fully stretched meeting the demands of the 2012 London Olympics.

Contractors once involved in such major projects have returned to their housebuilding roots, and our iconic structures are built by European and Australian contractors.

Future nuclear reactors would certainly come from France, as did those for Sizewell B, and what about the turbines and switchgear? Do we still have a UK turbine manufacturer?

MIKE MOLEY (M), Sale, Cheshire,

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