Japan's Toshiba Corp to acquire 60pct of NuGen

By Nicel Jane Avellana

Jan 15, 2014 12:47 AM EST

Japan-based Toshiba Corp said it would be purchasing 60% of the British nuclear joint venture between GDF Suez and Spain's Iberdrola that intended to construct three atomic reactors, Bloomberg reported. The price tag for NuGeneration Ltd is around £100 million or $164 million.

According to a company statement, Toshiba's nuclear reactor unit, Westinghouse Electric will give three of its AP1000 reactors for the Moorside site of NuGen in northwest England. Toshiba said the deal will still have to undergo the necessary regulatory approvals and will not affect its earnings forecasts for the full year.

The statement added that GDF Suez will still be helping NuGen operate the three power facilities which will hold around 3.4 gigawatts of combined capacity. It was in October when Toshiba said it was looking to buy a stake in the joint venture, the report said. The firms said that the first reactor is scheduled to go online in 2024.

A Reuters report said Toshiba's purchase is the second time that a Japanese engineering firm joined Britain's push to construct new nuclear plants. The first was from Hitachi which acquired a nuclear new build project two years ago, the report said.

Reuters reported that Britain remains one of the few nations in Europe that seeks to build new nuclear facilities after the Fukushima disaster in 2011. The country is looking to retire its aging existing reactors in order to reduce its electricity sector's carbon emissions.

This approach is in stark contrast to the steps taken by other nations like Germany and Austria which promised to eliminate the use of nuclear power completely after the Fukushima incident, the report said.

In a statement, UK Energy Minister Michael Fallon said, "The announcement by NuGen and Toshiba and Westinghouse shows that the UK is an attractive destination for investors in new nuclear." 

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