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End Sizewell uncertainty to secure more than 25,000 jobs

30 Jul 2021
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If Ministers block China’s involvement, they need to tell us urgently who will pay before vital new nuclear project ahead of autumn deadline

GMB, the energy union, has called on the Government to end uncertainty over the vital new Sizewell C nuclear project and urgently secure more than 25,000 jobs – and support a further 45,000 across the UK. 

Funding needs to be in place for the construction phase of the project by the autumn, or the whole scheme is at risk of collapsing. 

China’s state-owned energy company CGN forms 20% of the consortium behind the planned new Sizewell C nuclear reactor in Suffolk. 

But this week reports suggested Ministers are investigating ways to prevent CGN's involvement in all future power projects in the UK. 

CGN holds a one third stake in the Hinkley Point C nuclear plant that is already under construction in Somerset, and GMB said that Ministers must also ensure that there is no disruption to those works. 

Charlotte Childs, GMB National Officer, said: 

"If Ministers are set to block China’s involvement, they need to tell us  who is going to pay for it. 

"We need urgent clarity on how the funding mechanism will work by the autumn - otherwise the whole project could collapse. 

“Not only would that jeopardise the UK’s energy future and net zero targets but  would risk the 25,000 jobs Sizewell C would create. 

“Just a few years ago, the Conservatives were ready to hand over whole nuclear projects in the UK to China - lock stock and barrel. 

We need urgent clarity on how the funding mechanism will work by the autumn - otherwise the whole project could collapse.Not only would that jeopardise the UK’s energy future and net zero targets but  would risk the 25,000 jobs Sizewell C would create. 

Charlotte Childs, GMB National Officer

“Now they must ensure that a change in their funding policy does not jeopardise the jobs and social mobility projects like Sizewell C and Bradwell B will provide.  

“The Government must step in with a credible alternative to CGN funding that creates a low risk and affordable investment model for third parties, taking a public stake in key projects that will create a clear path to net zero. 

“If there is a change in policy then our members in construction will deliver a world-class project, but the Government needs to back this essential infrastructure and start investing in our own manufacturing supply chain.” 

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