Posted: Wed 16th Sep 2020

Updated: Wed 16th Sep

Economy Minister: “We must not lose sight that Wylfa remains one the best sites in the UK for new nuclear development”

North Wales news and information

The Economy Minister has asked the UK Government ‘to make their commitment clear on Wylfa’ following confirmation Hitachi are fully pulling out of the project.

Yesterday morning we broke the news in the UK that Hitachi were set to pull out of the Wylfa Newydd project, possibly opening the door for a Chinese Government vehicle to acquire the site, with it formally confirmed today in Japan.

Minister for Economy and North Wales Ken Skates has reacted to the news stating: “The news from Hitachi today is deeply disappointing.”

“There has been a tremendous effort by Horizon Nuclear Power, Ynys Mon Council, the North Wales region and all our partners to bring this important project forward. Now is the time to continue with this strong partnership and build upon those efforts. ”

“We must not lose sight that Wylfa remains one the best sites in the UK for new nuclear development.”

“We will work with our partners to explore all other options, including internationally with key allies, to deliver a sustainable future for the site.

“This must build on the skills and the supply chain capability we have in the region and across Wales. It places us in a robust position to benefit from existing and future opportunities within the nuclear sector. In North Wales, these include cutting edge decommissioning and future technologies’ deployment at the Trawsfynydd site and advanced research and development derived from investment in the Nuclear Futures Institute at Bangor University and the new AMRC Cymru facility on Deeside.

“We will also continue to press the UK Government to make their commitment clear on Wylfa. We must all work together to realise the potential this site has to transform the economy of North West Wales and significantly contribute towards net zero carbon”

The North Wales Economic Ambition Board has also reacted to the news, with the development being seen as a major cornerstone of economic growth in the region.

A spokesperson for North Wales Economic Ambition Board said: “The Ambition Board has been in dialogue with stakeholders and the UK and Welsh Governments to secure the future of Wylfa Newydd since the decision was taken to suspend the project earlier this year. We will continue those discussions.

“The site is crucial to the economy of Anglesey and the wider region and it’s vital we work together to define and secure its future.”

Janet Finch-Saunders MS – Shadow Minister for Climate Change, Energy and Rural Affairs, called it a “blow for North Wales” saying: “This is a real blow for North Wales and for the talented and skilled workforce that would have been developed and employed in all phases of the plant’s construction and operation, had it gone ahead.

“It’s also disappointing because it delays the process of decarbonisation – of which a switch to nuclear power is a key element if we are to achieve the UK’s ambition for net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 – and to ensure our energy security.

“However, it remains a prime site for a new nuclear project, and the UK government remains committed to discussing, with any viable companies and investors, the development of sites in the North Wales and elsewhere in the UK.”

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