The UK government has begun further discussions with a Japanese firm over a new nuclear power station on the isle of Anglesey.
Plans have been on the cards for a while now and have taken a major step forward according to ministers, with ‘Wylfa Newydd’ confirmed as the UK’s next nuclear build project.
The proposed plant would be a £12billion replacement of the former Wylfa station and look to have a 60-year operational life. Run by Horizon, a subsidiary of Japanese giant Hitachi, the plant could begin construction in 2020.
During the construction phase the plant could create 8,500 jobs in the local area, a welcome boost following the original plants decommission in 2015 following 40 years of service.
Once operational the site could create 900 jobs at the plant whilst according to independent research could be worth £5.7billion to the Welsh Economy.
The proposed new station – which could generate 2,700 megawatts of electricity to power up to five-million homes – is still in its early stages and if successful would need to go through government approvals if negotiations are successful.
Energy secretary Ken Clarke told the House of Commons that any direct investment would be made alongside Horizon and the Japanese Government.
"This is an important next step for the project, although no decision has been taken yet to proceed with the project, and successful conclusion of these negotiations will be subject to full government, regulatory and other approvals, including but not limited to value for money, due diligence and state aid requirements.
"It remains the government's objective in the longer term that new nuclear projects - like other energy infrastructure - should be financed by the private sector."
Duncan Hawthorne, Chief Executive Officer at Horizon, said:
“This announcement is fantastic news for Anglesey, the nuclear industry, and Horizon, as well as a clear signal of the Government’s commitment to delivering a low carbon future for the UK.
“Building on last year’s regulatory acceptance of our tried and tested reactor technology, it shows real momentum behind the project which will bring huge benefits everywhere from Anglesey to Wales and the UK and Japan.
"Our focus now is to ensure we continue to deliver on our key project milestones as we move towards construction.”