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Angling For Subsidies: E.On, RWE Threaten To Drop Nuclear Project On Cost

FRANKFURT, July 5 (Reuters) – German utility companies RWE and E.ON have all but abandoned their plans to build two nuclear power plants in Britain, Sueddeutsche Zeitung reported on Tuesday, citing company sources.

Plans to build new plants were increasingly unlikely to be carried out because investments would be too expensive, the German daily quoted a manager familiar with the project as saying.

Asked to comment on the report RWE and E.ON said it was up to the British government.

“We are awaiting next steps by the British government. There will be no decisions before that,” an RWE spokesman said.

“There has been no change in plans regarding these projects,” an E.ON spokesman said, also adding that no further steps would be taken before the British government was due to set regulatory conditions later this year.

The Horizon joint venture, launched in 2009 by German energy rivals RWE and EON, plans to build six gigawatts of new nuclear power capacity in Britain by 2025 and have a first nuclear reactor running by 2020.

That would mean investments of up to 17 billion euros ($24.7 billion), the paper reported.

Horizon has already bought sites shortlisted by the British government for building new nuclear plants at Wylfa on Anglesey in Wales and Oldbury-on-Severn in Gloucestershire.

Reuters, 5 July 2011