February 24, 2009 / 2:44 PM / in 10 years

FACTBOX-Italy and France cooperate on nuclear power

 Feb 24 (Reuters) - French President Nicolas Sarkozy and Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi signed a nuclear cooperation deal on Tuesday at a bilateral summit. [nLO637203]
 Italian utility Enel (ENEI.MI) said it had agreed with French power giant EDF (EDF.PA) to study the feasibility of building four nuclear plants in Italy and to extend Enel’s involvement in France’s nuclear programme.
 The two companies will set up a 50-50 joint venture for the feasibility study then, once Italy passes a new law authorising construction of new plants — suspended by a 1987 referendum — they would set up holding companies to build four new plants.
 Enel officials said the Italians would have a 60 percent stake and EDF 40 percent in each holding company, with both allowed to sell on shares to third parties as long as they jointly keep a controlling stake of at least 51 percent.
 The first new Italian plant is expected to be operative in 2020, said one Enel official.
 Under a deal reached in Nov. 2007 between France and Italy, Enel took a 12.5 percent stake in France’s first European Pressurized Reactor (EPR), or improved third generation plant, which is being built in Flamanville, northwestern France.
 It was also given the option to take part in five other new generation reactors, including one authorised at Penly, again in northwestern France.
 As part of that previous accord, Enel on Tuesday also signed an agreement expressing its interest in extending its participation in France’s nuclear programme, as part of a previous accord with EDF, on building five more EPR plants.
 An Enel spokeswoman said the deal signed in Rome meant Enel would be exercising its option for 12.5 percent stake in Penly.
 With the cost of building such a reactor running at about 4 billion euros, Enel’s investment in Penly would be worth around  500 million euros.
 France is Europe’s nuclear energy champion with 58 nuclear reactors running with a total capacity of 63,260 megawatts. It aims to increase the number of its reactors to 60, with a large part of the newly generated electricity to be sold to European neighbours. The EPRs are also used by France to showcase its nuclear power expertise to sell reactors abroad.
 The following lists France’s nuclear power plants connected to the grid, and the planned ones.
 Name          region     Capacity      Start date  Operator
                          (in megawatts)
 Flamanville   northwest  2 x 1,300     1985/1986    EDF
 Paluel        northwest  4 x 1,300     1984         EDF
 Penly         northwest  2 x 1,300     1990/1992    EDF
 Gravelines    northwest  6 x   900     1980/1985    EDF
 Nogent        northeast  2 x 1,300     1987/1988    EDF
 Chooz         northeast  2 x 1,450     1996/1997    EDF
 Cattenom      northeast  4 x 1,300     1986/1991    EDF
 Fessenheim    east       2 x   900     1977/1978    EDF
 Bugey         southeast  4 x   900     1978/1979    EDF
 Saint-Alban   southeast  2 x 1,300     1985/1986    EDF
 Cruas         southeast  4 x   900     1983/1984    EDF
 Tricastin     southeast  4 x   900     1980/1981    EDF
 Golfech       southwest  2 x 1,300     1990/1993    EDF
 Blayais       southwest  4 x   900     1981/1983    EDF
 Civaux        southwest  2 x 1,450     1997/1999    EDF
 Belleville    Centre     2 x 1,300     1987/1988    EDF
 Dampierre     Centre     4 x   900     1980/1981    EDF Saint-Laurent Centre     2 x   900     1981         EDF
 Chinon        Centre     4 x   900     1982/83/87   EDF
 Flamanville   northwest  1 x 1,600     2012         EDF
 Penly         northwest  1 x 1,600     2017         EDF  (Compiled by Muriel Boselli)  

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