Balfour Beatty joint venture with Areva looks set to win job to build four UK power stations

Balfour Beatty is being tipped to win the huge job to build up to four nuclear power stations in Wylfa and Oldbury for utility joint venture Horizon Nuclear Power.

Balfour Beatty is working with French nuclear reactor manufacturer Areva on its bid for the contract, which could be worth up to £10bn over the four plants, and is up against a consortium of Laing O’Rourke with US-based reactor builder Westinghouse.

Horizon Nuclear Power has previously said it will make an announcement on the consortium to win the job by the end of this month.

Horizon’s nuclear power stations are set to be the second wave of nuclear plants to be built under the government’s new build programme, following the construction of plants at Hinkley in Somerset by EDF.

An industry source said: “It is strongly rumoured that Areva are now in line to win the Horizon contract. It feels like Areva may have got French government funding to help support their bid.”

The Sunday Times yesterday also reported speculation that Horizon is set to choose Areva, but didn’t mention that Areva is bidding in partnership with Balfour Beatty, meaning a huge potential boon for the contractor.

EDF is also using an Areva reactor design, but is yet to decide which contractor will supply the civil engineering to support the construction of the wider plant. It is set to choose between a consortium of Balfour Beatty and Vinci, and Laing O’Rourke and Bouygues, on the £2.5bn main civils contract in the summer.