Chinese involvement in Sizewell nuclear power plant, “next Huawei”, warn MEPs

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The Chinese involvement in the Sizewell C nuclear power plant will be the “next Huawei,” MEPs warned as they called for a complete overhaul of energy policy.

It comes after EDF, the French energy company, on Wednesday filed an application to build the next nuclear power plant in Suffolk, which it intends to develop with the public energy company, China General Nuclear Power Group (CGN).

However, former conservative chief Sir Iain Duncan Smith warned that the power plant was “the next Huawei”.

“This is another major manifestation of the problem we face after going wrong with China years ago,” Sir Iain told the Daily Telegraph.

“With Huawei, with Sizewell C, you will see one by one the extent of the dependence that we have created on China and we have to face it. “

Earlier this week, security officials launched a review of Huawei’s involvement in the UK’s 5G network following US sanctions.

“I think that our whole energy policy must be reviewed in the light of our problem with China,” added Sir Iain. He urged the government to remedy “fundamental errors” in energy policy, because he warned that by concluding a nuclear deal with China, this would only make the UK “more dependent on China while we let’s create more power plants ”.

He cited “many other sources of authentic British produced energy” that would be “faster and cheaper” than working with China.

“We don’t have to do this. It is a total mistake to even think of going ahead with this, “he said.

His thoughts were echoed by Bob Seely, a member of a group of conservative MPs opposed to Huawei, who warned that even if a volume of trade with China was necessary, he was “concerned that if we became dependent of critical Chinese-built national infrastructure in the UK. we can live to regret it ”.

“Unfortunately, China for the past twenty years has been replaced by a new Chinese leadership that is much more combative and frankly ideological,” said Seely.

The Isle of Wight MP called for “a thorough review of how the UK and the Western Alliance interact with China” before “making very important decisions”.

He said such a review should include “free and fair trade, human rights, surveillance, espionage and security, the risks of the Chinese CNI in the United Kingdom, the geopolitical ambitions of the Communist Party as well as the interests of our main allies in the Pacific. ”

Meanwhile, Nick Timothy, former adviser to Theresa May, who previously warned in the newspaper of the need for the UK to stand up to China, said, “It is as serious as the decision to authorize Huawei in our telecommunications network. We must not allow China to play an additional role in our essential national infrastructure, in particular our nuclear power plants. “

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