Hitachi says ‘no decision’ made on UK nuclear plant

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…As Iran announces plan to launch 2 satellites into orbit on domestically made rockets***

Hitachi said “no formal decision” has been made over the future of a UK nuclear plant following a report it would halt construction.

The Nikkei Asian Review reported the firm’s board would be likely to decide to suspend all work on the Wylfa Newydd plant next week.

Shares in the Japanese company jumped 8% after the report.

In December, the firm said it would do its utmost to ensure the nuclear power facility went ahead.

It followed mounting speculation that Hitachi was considering scrapping the project due to potential increases in construction costs.

On Friday, the firm said suspension of the project remained an option.

“No formal decision has been made in this regard currently, while Hitachi has been assessing the Horizon Project including its potential suspension and related financial impacts in terms of economic rationality as a private company,” it said in a statement.

The UK government had been in formal negotiations with the Japanese firm over the project since June.

Hitachi announced its agreement to take over the Horizon project in 2012.

The plant would aim to have a generating capacity of 2900 MW by the mid 2020s and have a 60-year operational life.

The original Wylfa nuclear plant near Cemaes closed in 2015 after more than 40 years service.

In the meantime, Iran’s president on Thursday confirmed the coming launch of two new satellites into orbit as the U.S. remained concerned that the Iran-made rockets could help further its ballistic missile development.

President Hassan Rouhani confirmed the Islamic Republic will launch the rockets “in the coming weeks.” He said the satellites will be delivered by domestically made rockets. He didn’t elaborate further.

The U.S. and its allies are concerned that the same satellite-launching technology could be used to develop long-range missiles.

Earlier in January, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Iran’s plans for sending satellites into orbit demonstrate the country’s defiance of a U.N. Security Council resolution that calls on Iran to undertake no activity related to ballistic missiles capable of delivering nuclear weapons.

Iran insists the launches do not violate the resolution.

Previously, Iran has sent several short-lived satellites into orbit over the past decade, and in 2013 launched a monkey into space.

BBC with additional report from Fox News