A Chinese nuclear power company is exploring a bid for the Moorside development in west Cumbria.
China General Nuclear Power Corporation is reportedly keen on taking control of NuGen which is planning the 15 billion pound project.
The current owners of NuGen Toshiba are looking to sell their 100% stake after encountering major financial difficulties. Critics say UK government support is essential.
One of the companies that is backing the proposed Moorside nuclear site in West Cumbria has once again delayed reporting its annual results.
Toshiba - which has a 60% stake in NuGen, which in turn intends to build the facility - has had problems over its American investments.
The Japanese firm has now predicted it could register a loss of more than £7billion.
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Takeshi Yokota will take over as the new Chairman of NuGen.
NuGen are currently developing the Moorside nuclear power station in west Cumbria.
Mr. Yokota is the former Executive Officer and Senior Vice President of electronics company Toshiba.
“We look forward to working with our new chairman and board to drive forward our phenomenal project at Moorside. I am confident his renowned international experience combined with being based in the UK will greatly assist in our dealings with key stakeholders, including government.”
Nuclear power giants NuGen say that they're plans to develop a nuclear plant in west Cumbria are to go ahead as normal following the UK's decision to leave the European Union.
The Moorside Project involves an investment of £20 billion to develop a new nuclear power station.
Before the EU referendum, a number of Cumbrian MPs raised concerns about the implications of a 'leave' vote in regards to the major investment from NuGen.
NuGen is a consortium made up of French, American and Japanese companies and the MPs said they'd made it clear their investments were more secure with the UK as part of the EU.
In a statement, the energy firm say that although they are looking for clarity on policy from the Government, they believe that major investment in nuclear power will provide stability for the UK.
“The Moorside Project continues to progress without change. "NuGen’s shareholders, Toshiba and ENGIE, remain committed to taking forward Moorside - Europe’s largest new nuclear power station - to produce and sell power to the UK grid. We firmly believe the case for new nuclear power stations for the UK is compelling, and unchanged as a result of the referendum.
"New nuclear power stations are vital for the UK’s future prosperity, delivering low-carbon, secure and stably-priced electricity for generations to come, while securing our future indigenous energy supplies on UK soil. NuGen will be in a position to provide power to the UK grid in the mid 2020’s.
"In order to deliver our station on time and on budget, we must secure clarity on policy and ensure the Government does everything it can to deliver investment stability for vital UK infrastructure projects.”
The Moorside Project involves plans to build a new nuclear power station in West Cumbria, and residents close to the proposed site will receive newsletters next week.
NuGen have had problems with their public consultation lately, after misleading letters were posted to West Cumbrian residents that led some fear they were receiving compulsory purchase orders.
In addition to the consultation events, NuGen’s continuous exhibition at the Moorside Information Centre, Whitehaven Civic Hall, will be open between 10am-4pm Monday-Friday throughout the consultation period.
NuGen’s Planning Lead in Cumbria, Fergus McMorrow, said:
The first of the 28 events will be held in Whitehaven on the 14th May and over the next 11 weeks we will move around the county - from Carlisle in the north to Barrow-in-Furness in the south. It is extremely important that everyone gets an opportunity to come and have their say about the Moorside Project.
A nuclear programme for school children has launched. NuGuen's 'Bright Sparks' gives pupils an insight into Cumbria's energy sector.Read the full story ›