French electricity supplier Electricité de France (EDF) has officially completed a £12bn acquisition of British Energy following regulatory approval by the European Commission (EC) in December.
In a statement to the stock exchange, EDF declared its offer wholly unconditional and said that it was awaiting a conversion of shares held by the government’s Nuclear Liabilities Fund, which holds 35.5 per cent of shares in British Energy.
The government has welcomed British Energy’s sale, which is expected to raise approximately £4.4bn towards the cost of decommissioning British Energy’s existing nuclear power stations and will form a significant step in EDF’s plans to build four nuclear reactors in the UK.
Ed Miliband, UK secretary for energy and climate change, said: ‘In addition to the important investment made by EDF, our ambition is to have more than one firm building and operating nuclear power stations in the UK.
‘There are strong signals of interest in this from the power industry and we will continue to work with stakeholders to bring about the conditions that can make that possible.’
Business secretary Lord Mandelson said: ‘Completion of this takeover represents not only a £12.5bn investment in the UK by EDF but, in opening the way for new nuclear build, should provide many billions of pounds more opportunity for the UK supply chain.’