EDF asks for Force Majeure for Hinkley Point C

The move is expected to push back dates on the current contract to help the company avoid a potential penalty

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EDF has asked the government-owned Low Carbon Contracts Company (LCCC) to trigger the Force Majeure clause on its Hinkley Point C contract to avoid penalties as a result of delays caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.

In May the French utility warned the costs of the Hinkley Point C nuclear power plant currently under construction in England could soar by an extra £3 billion.

In a statement, the LCCC said: “The LCCC recognises that Covid-19 has impacted projects and is capable of being a Force Majeure event under the contract for difference.”

Triggering the Force Majeure clause is expected to enable the company to avoid losing guaranteed payments.

EDF has already set a target for the first unit of the new nuclear power station to start operations in June 2027.

The first new nuclear power station to be built in the UK in over 20 years, Hinkley Point C in Somerset is forecast to provide electricity for around six million homes.