Japan and UK sign nuclear pact

The UK and Japan have signed a pact on nuclear power which will open the door to Japanese companies entering the UK market and give British firms a slice of Japan’s multi-billion decommissioning market.

Announced as part of British Prime Minister David Cameron’s first official visit to Japan, the deal also see the UK share expertise, experience and technology in the remediation, decontamination and decommissioning of the Fukushima nuclear site.

Cameron said: “British companies have significant expertise in nuclear decommissioning and clean-up, with 19 nuclear sites in the UK currently being managed through the process.”

UK energy minister Charles Hendry added: “The UK has a wealth of expertise and experience in the area of nuclear decommissioning and waste management. I am in no doubt that co-operation with Japan in these areas will bring mutual benefits. This agreement will open up opportunities for UK firms to work with Japanese industry.”

Earlier this week, Russia’s state-owned power company Rosatom revealed it is considering taking a stake in the UK’s Horizon nuclear project.

Last month Horizon’s original partners RWE and E.ON both pulled out, citing financial constraints in their home country of Germany, and Horizon was put up for sale.

Rosatom's director of communications Sergey Novikov said: “The British market is potentially attractive for Rosatom. Rosatom can give all guarantees that the construction of a NPP [nuclear power plant] in the UK will meet absolutely all international safety requirements and International Atomic Energy Agency standards.”

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