Hinkley Point C: EDF to take a final call on the £18bn nuclear project in Britain on 28 July
EDF’s UK subsidiary is the largest electricity supplier by volume in the countryReuters

Electricite de France (EDF) will take a final call on its £18bn (€21.59bn, $23.81bn) Hinkley Point C (HPC) investment on 28 July.

An EDF press release said a board meeting would decide whether or not to construct the two nuclear reactors in Somerset. It stated that HPC, the 3,200 MWe nuclear power station which was proposed by the UK government in 2010, is an important element of its business strategy. It added that the two reactors would also help strengthen its position in the UK, where its subsidiary EDF Energy is already the largest electricity supplier by volume, with 15 nuclear reactors in operation.

EDF said HPC would enable the group to "mobilise all its significant nuclear engineering skills" after the final investment decision. "The first concrete of reactor 1 of HPC, scheduled for mid-2019, would coincide with perfect continuity with the start-up of the EPR at Flamanville, scheduled for the end of 2018," it added.

The HPC project would also help France's economy by creating jobs in both big and small companies operating in the nuclear sector, EDF said.

If a decision is taken to go ahead with the proposal, it would mark an important milestone for the project, which has been criticised by many including French employee unions. The unions fear that the high cost of the project could push the company into losses which in turn could lead to job redundancies.

Clearance for the project would be seen as a positive sign for the UK. It would indicate that the country continues to be a good investment destination despite its decision to leave the European Union (EU). "New nuclear is an essential part of our plan for a secure, clean and affordable energy system that will power the economy throughout this century. It's clear that we are open for business as we come closer to sealing the deal on this major investment in British infrastructure and British jobs," Greg Clark, the newly appointed UK business and energy secretary, was quoted as saying by The Telegraph.