British nuclear consortium NuGen plans to build a next generation nuclear power plant in West Cumbria

Westinghouse to buy stake in Moorside nuclear project

Westinghouse is close to buying a 50 per cent stake in British nuclear consortium NuGen that plans to build a next generation nuclear power station in West Cumbria, the Finacial Times have reported.

Westinghouse, a nuclear power company owned by Japanese engineering group Toshiba will supposedly acquire the share currently owned by Spanish electric utility company Iberdrola worth about £100m.

Partnering with French utility company GDF Suez, who owns the other half of NuGen, Toshiba will improve its position in the UK nuclear industry, helping to develop NuGen’s foreseen 3.6 GW Moorside nuclear power station in West Cumbria, north-west England.

In October 2009, NuGen bought land on the West Cumbrian Coast from the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority, aiming to build the next generation nuclear power station.

If confirmed, the Westinghouse-NuGen agreement would come two months after Britain's energy secretary approved a deal with French utility EDF Energy to build the £16bn Hinkley Point atomic power plant in Somerset.

EDF's long-time Chinese partners, China General Nuclear Corporation and China National Nuclear Corporation, will take a combined stake of 30 to 40 percent in that consortium, while French state-owned nuclear group Areva will take 10 per cent.

Another Japanese nuclear technology supplier – Hitachi - acquired the Horizon nuclear project last year and is planning to build two to three nuclear power plants.

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