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The go-ahead has been given for the UK’s first new nuclear station in a generation.

French firm EDF and the British government has signed an agreement to build two nuclear reactors at Hinkley Point C in Somerset, southwest England, at a cost of £16 billion.

EDF will lead a consortium of firms involved in the project, which include China General Nuclear Corporation, China National Nuclear Corporation and Areva.

UK prime minister David Cameron said: “Earlier this month I spoke about our new industrial policy that looks to the future, and about our determination to embrace new technologies and back new industries and energy sources so that they can flourish and help us build a rebalanced economy across the country.

“As part of our plan to help Britain succeed, after months of negotiation, today we have a deal for the first nuclear power station in a generation to be built in Britain. This deal means £16bn of investment coming into the country and the creation of 25,000 jobs, which is brilliant news for the South West and for the country as a whole.

“As we compete in the tough global race, this underlines the confidence there is in Britain and makes clear that we are very much open for business.”

EDF Group chairman and CEO Henri Proglio said: “The agreement in principle reached today with the British government significantly strengthens the industrial and energy co-operation between France and the United Kingdom.

“The project at Hinkley Point represents a great opportunity for the French nuclear industry in a context of a renewal of competencies.

“This project will deliver a boost to the economy and create job opportunities on both sides of the channel and will enable the United Kingdom, a country in which EDF is already the leading producer of electricity, to increase the share of carbon-free energy in its production mix.”

Copyright © 2014 euronews

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