The UK’s BNFL has gained government approval to sell its nuclear site management and cleanup business British Nuclear Group. The sale, which will be conducted through a competitive process, is expected to be completed by autumn 2007 at the latest.
The approval came from UK secretary of state for trade and industry Alan Johnson who said: “The process will coincide with the letting by the NDA [Nuclear Decommissioning Authority] of a new five-year contract for Sellafield and is in line with their strategy to develop a competitive market in decommissioning and bring in private sector expertise to improve performance.”
NDA chairman, Sir Anthony Cleaver, said: “The government’s decision to approve a sale of BNG brings the benefits of competition, by way of a sale, to our biggest site – Sellafield, earlier than in our original schedule. By offering a five-year contract to the new owner our aim is to provide the incentive to drive strong performance improvements while also providing a period of stability for the site.”
Meanwhile, BNFL chief executive Michael Parker said: “The sale is a positive strategic move for both the business and our employees. We now look forward to working closely with the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority to develop the criteria against which preferred bidders will be selected. I expect that there will be significant interest from potential purchasers.”
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