for Japanese


23 September, 2020

Hitachi to End Business Operations on UK Nuclear Power Project

On September 16, Hitachi, Ltd., announced that it would end business operations on a multi-billion-dollar project to construct nuclear power plants (NPPs) in the United Kingdom. It made the decision considering that twenty months had already elapsed since the project was suspended in January 2019, and also because the investment environment has “become increasingly severe” due to the impact of COVID-19.

In the project, Horizon Nuclear Power Limited in the UK— acquired by Hitachi in 2012 from the German power companies E.On and RWE—were to develop a nuclear power station (NPS) comprising two UK Advanced Boiling Water Reactor (ABWR) units (1,350 MW each) at Wylfa Newydd in Anglesey, located in northwest Wales. After Hitachi underwent a generic design assessment (GDA) and obtained approval from UK regulators to deploy the UK ABWR in the country, it started negotiating with the national government on a financing model and other issues toward realizing the project, but failed to reach an agreement in the end. In January 2019, then, Hitachi decided to freeze the project from the viewpoint of economic rationality.

Because of the decision to withdraw from the project, Hitachi will now coordinate with the UK government and relevant organizations regarding the handling of the planned construction sites, future cooperation, and other matters. The decision is expected to have only a minor effect on Hitachi’s business results, however, because it had already posted, due to the suspension of the project, an impairment loss and other expenses totaling JPY294.6 billion (USD 2.8 billion at USD1=JPY104.77) in its consolidated financial results for fiscal 2018, the year ended March 31, 2019.

With the focus in Japan currently on restarting and decommissioning NPPs, there are concerns in the Japanese nuclear industry about maintaining technological capabilities in both designing and constructing NPPs. Last year, Hitachi President Toshiaki Higashihara expressed a sense of crisis upon the decision to freeze the UK project, particularly in regard to securing nuclear human resources for the future, saying, “We should discuss the matter with other manufacturers and come to a conclusion as quickly as possible.” Japan’s White Paper on Nuclear Energy 2019, issued last month, treated the development of nuclear human resources in a section on overseas topics, in which it pointed out the importance of maintaining knowhow and accumulating experience in plant construction. As points of comparison, it cited the situation in China, where the construction of new plants is proceeding, as well as those in Europe and North America, where there have been delays.


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

SNS facebooktwitter

NPPs Map


Grossi on Fukushima: Marking a Decade Since the Accident

10 March, 2021
Grossi on Fukushima: Marking a Decade Since the Accident04:11

Recent News

18 November, 2021
METI Minister Speaks to IAEA International Conference on Decade of Progress Since Fukushima Daiichi Accident
15 November, 2021
Nuclear Energy’s Contribution to Achieving SDGs
8 November, 2021
COP26: Prime Minister Kishida Announces Additional Contribution of USD10 Billion for Climate Change Measures
30 October, 2021
Reelection of Suttsu Mayor Means Literature Investigation for HLW Disposal Will Continue
21 October, 2021
Kishida Makes First Visit to Fukushima Since Becoming Prime Minister
15 October, 2021
LDP Adds SMR Development and Nuclear Fusion to NPP Restarts in Its Policy Manifesto
7 October, 2021
Kishida Administration Inaugurated, with New METI Minister Hagiuda Holding Press Conference on Taking Office
6 October, 2021
IAEA Holds 65th General Conference in Vienna, with Japanese Minister of State for Science and Technology Delivering Statement in the General Debate
30 September, 2021
JAEC Releases 2020 White Paper on Nuclear Energy
17 September, 2021
NRA Permits Shimane-2 under New Regulatory Standards
14 September, 2021
IAEA Deputy Director General Evrard Visits Japan in Advance of Safety Review of ALPS-treated Water
1 September, 2021
Evaluation Report Issued by IAEA’s Review Mission to Fukushima Daiichi: First Visit since 2018
24 August, 2021
METI and IAEA Agree on Further Review Missions to Fukushima Daiichi
4 August, 2021
JAEA Restarts High-Temperature Engineering Test Reactor “HTTR”
2 August, 2021
Information about Fukushima Daiichi NPS Water Treatment
28 July, 2021
METI’s Committee Shows Rough Draft of Next Strategic Energy Plan
2 July, 2021
Mihama-3 Restarted After Decade-long Hiatus: First Restart in Japan of a Reactor Operating Beyond 40 Years
28 June, 2021
Mihama-3 Restarts after Decade-long Hiatus
25 June, 2021
New Canada-Japan Partnership Supports Greater Collaboration to Meet Climate Change Objectives and Net-zero Goals
24 June, 2021
METI Issues New Green Growth Strategy Through Achieving Carbon Neutrality