The Korea Herald


Kepco eyes Toshiba-led British nuclear project

By Park Ga-young

Published : March 22, 2017 - 17:46

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Cho Hwan-Eik, CEO of the state-owned Korea Electric Power Corp. (Kepco), said Tuesday the company is considering a stake in a Toshiba-led nuclear plant project in the UK.

“Once (NuGen’s) sales plan, such as debt and equity structure, is set, we will jump into the race,” Cho told reporters Tuesday evening.

He also said that the company has had informal meetings with Toshiba but nothing has been fixed since negotiations between the Japanese and British governments are still ongoing. 
KEPCO CEO Cho Hwan-Eik (Yonhap) KEPCO CEO Cho Hwan-Eik (Yonhap)

NuGen is a joint venture between Japan’s Toshiba and France’s Engie to build nuclear power plants in Moorside in Cumbria, UK.

Toshiba is seeking to leave the UK project after reporting a $6.3 billion writedown in its US nuclear business Westinghouse Electric.

There has been market speculation that Kepco is in talks to buy a stake in NuGen from Toshiba but it was the first time a Kepco high official had mentioned the company’s interest in the UK nuclear project.

If Kepco acquires a stake in NuGen, it would be the corporation’s first overseas nuclear power plant project in eight years since the company secured a contract to build four nuclear plants in the United Arab Emirates.

However, the CEO played down the possibility of taking over financially-strained Westinghouse from Toshiba.

Meanwhile, on Tuesday, a general shareholders meeting approved the renewal of Cho’s term. He is now the longest-serving head of the Korean state utility firm.

Cho said he will devote next year to exploring new business areas such as the smart home and smart grid using big data and artificial intelligence, and expanding renewable energy. 

By Park Ga-young (