Electricite de France said it would delay a decision, which had been expected in March, on when it would proceed with construction of a new nuclear power reactor at the Hinkley Point facility in Somerset, England.
A final go-ahead was expected in the middle of 2014, but the company said last year it would make a decision in March of 2015. However, EDF now says it will not be ready to make the announcement next month, either.
Construction Inquirer said the Hinkley C project is expected to cost $24.3 billion.
EDF said current market conditions and ongoing negotiations with China General Nuclear Power Corporation and China National Nuclear Corporation were the reasons for the new setback.
The company, which is mostly state owned, recently announced its earning for 2014, which included a 25 percent drop in profits to $1.3 billion. But time is still of the essence for a decision on Hinkley Point C, said EDF chief Jean-Bernard Levy. He kept remarks brief, however, citing ongoing negotiations as the reason to refrain from further comment.
Negotiations include the possibility of a nuclear construction project in Bradwell in Essex, England. CGNPC and CNNC are seeking commitments to build as part of a deal to finance Hinkley Point C, according to media reports.
EDF’s financial problems stem from project delays in France and Finland. In Flamanville in Normandy, a pressurized water rector expected to go on line in 2016 is now projected to start operations in 2017. Construction of Olkiluoto 3 in Finland, which began in 2005, is not expected to be completed until 2018.