Former energy secretary Ed Davey "doesn't know" if Hinkley Point C will be built

Jessica Morris
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British Government Signs A Deal For New Nuclear Power Plant
Davies also defended the price tag for Hinkley (Source: Getty)

Former energy secretary Ed Davey has admitted he doesn't know if the £18bn Hinkley Point C nuclear power plant will be built.

Asked whether Britain's first nuclear power plant to be built in 25 years will be built on BBC Radio 4's Today programme, he said: "I don't know, I'm not a nuclear scientist."

The current Conservative government has stressed that the project will be completed, despite reports of dissent within EDF over its viability. They suggest that some factions believe it could plunge the French utility giant into financial ruin.

Davies defended the government's controversial price tag for Hinkley, with critics saying they are overpaying. The UK will pay EDF £92.50 for every megawatt hour of electricity the plant produces over 35 years, about a third of current wholesale prices.

"I negotiated a good deal, my Conservative colleagues would've shaken at a much higher price actually," Davies added.

"They were gagging for nuclear. George Osborne in particular was wanting to have Chinese investment, big infrastructure projects to show off to the Tory backbenchers. It was me saying I’m going to walk away from this deal if we don’t do what we promised parliament, and that meant we had to get the price down to below £90 per megawatt hour, which I did."

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