EDF declines comment on China nuclear probe report

PARIS Tue Dec 25, 2012 12:44pm GMT

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PARIS (Reuters) - Electricite de France (EDF.PA) on Tuesday declined to comment on a report of a probe into its recent partnership with a Chinese utility to develop a new type of nuclear reactor.

Several French news websites cited a forthcoming article in satirical weekly Le Canard Enchaine, due to appear on Wednesday, as saying that French finance-ministry inspectors had begun an inquiry into the terms of the China agreement.

"We have no reaction," a spokeswoman for EDF said, adding she had not seen the forthcoming article. The French finance ministry was unavailable for comment.

EDF had said in November that the agreement with China Guangdong Nuclear Power Corporation Holding GDNCP.UL was to develop a concept for a 1,000-MW reactor. This would be cheaper and smaller than the 1,600-MW EPR reactor blamed for the loss of a landmark project in Abu Dhabi in 2009.

(Reporting by Lionel Laurent and Gerard Bon; editing by Patrick Graham)