Global Nuclear Power Industry Facing Major Hurdles

By Sankar Ray

Nuclear power financing is embroiled in a global bankruptcy with top two, Toshiba-Westinghouse, US subsidiary of Toshiba of Japan and its French equivalent, the state-owned AREVA facing financial debacle. Toshiba Westinghouse, afflicted with technical problems, time and massive cost overruns at construction projects V.C. Summer and Vogtle in the USA, filed for bankruptcy protection of its American subsidiary. AREVA went technically bankrupt as a sequel to a cumulative six-year loss of US$12.3 billion. The French government came out with a bailout for US$5.3 billion, allowing the process of break-up of state utility EDF, taken as a nuclear building and services subsidiary AREVA-NP. The rescue scheme was through by the European Commission, although AREVA remains delisted from the Paris stock market since August 2017.

The French major has to struggle facing accusation of ‘a vast quality-control scandal that led to the provisional shutdown of a dozen reactors in France. Thousands of fabrication dossiers have to be examined for irregularities or falsifications. The safety implications remain to be assessed’, revealed the Nuclear Industry Status Report 2017 (WNISR2017), just released in Paris The presenter was Mycle Schneider, international consultant, lead author and publisher, alongside co-authors Juan C. Rodriguez, equity analyst at AlphaValue and Andreas Rüdinger, independent consultant and associated researcher at the Institute for Sustainable Development and International Relations (IDDRI).

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