Wednesday, September 24, 2008

EDF To Buy British Energy for $23.2 Billion

edfWe have a winner in the British Energy Stakes. Per the BBC,

French energy firm EDF has agreed to buy British Energy, the firm which operates eight UK nuclear power plants, in a £12.5bn deal.

In addition, British Gas-owner Centrica said it is in talks with EDF to take 25% of all power generated by British Energy once it is in French hands.

It will also take a 25% stake in all new nuclear plants built by EDF.

British Energy power plants generate about 14% of UK energy supply, but many are due to be shut within 15 years.

British Energy chairman Sir Adrian Montague said the deal was "good for shareholders, good for staff, good for the nuclear industry and good for the country".

In an interview with the BBC, he played down concerns about the extent of which the UK's energy provision would fall into foreign hands should the tie-up be successful.

"This country has had a history of being very open to foreign capital. All the investors in the energy industry have sustained jobs and investment in the UK," he said.

"I think it's more important to look at the strength of the supply we enjoy in the UK rather than who owns it."

1 comment:

Rod Adams said...

Does anyone know what the UK process for license extensions entails? Is there any possibility that the often repeated phrase that the current BE reactors are due to shut down within 15 years is about as true as the similar comment about US reactors was in the 1990s?

In other words - can the reactor licenses be extended? How hard is that and what kind of capital investments need to be made?