LONDON, March 6 Britain said on Thursday it was
making 18 more sites available for the next generation of
nuclear power stations and gave operators four weeks to pick the
ones they wanted.
"Interest in building new nuclear power stations in the UK
is strong," Business Secretary John Hutton said in a statement
on the Government News Network (www.gnn.gov.uk).
"Planning applications for new plants are likely to focus on
areas in the vicinity of existing sites and so it's welcome that
the NDA is making its significant land and other assets
available to the market," he added.
Until now, the only sites that were clearly available were
eight belonging to British Energy BGY.L.
The UK's Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA), which owns
18 sites including two with operational reactors, issued a
notice asking potential developers to name the assets they were
interested in by April 3.
Hutton told the Financial Times he expected the new
generation of nuclear power stations to supply much more of the
country's electricity than the 19 percent the existing ones
He also said the government may sell its stake stake in
British Energy, worth over 2 billion pounds.
"We have to consider for the medium term what view we should
take about holding on to these shares," he was quoted by the FT
British Energy shares rose 3.9 percent to 568-1/2 pence by
(Reporting by Pete Harrison; Editing by Louise Ireland)