Nuclear energy: grow your business in the UK

  • opportunities across the supply chain
  • world-leading nuclear expertise
  • strong government support
90 million GBP of government investment in nuclear research and development every year
  • UK nuclear energy: at a glance

    Nuclear energy has operated reliably and safely in the UK for over 60 years. We have extensive experience of the full nuclear life cycle, from front-end design through to decommissioning. Today, our 8 existing nuclear power plants generate around 20% of the UK’s electricity demand.

    The industry has set out proposals to develop 18 gigawatts (GW) of nuclear generating capacity at 6 sites in the UK. These projects could lead to a significant reduction in CO2 emissions and the creation of around 35,000 jobs at the peak of construction.

    We have new build sites in:

    • Hinkley Point C, Somerset
    • Sizewell, Suffolk
    • Moorside, Cumbria
    • Wylfa, Anglesey
    • Oldbury, Gloucestershire
    • Bradwell, Essex

    Decommissioning is another source of opportunity. The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) is responsible for the decommissioning and cleaning up of our civil public sector nuclear legacy. The agency currently manage 17 sites through this process. The goal is to achieve the end state for all sites by 2125.

  • World-leading nuclear expertise

    More than 65,000 people currently work in the UK’s civil nuclear industry. These are skilled workers with experience in fuel manufacturing, the operation and maintenance of reactors, and management of the waste generated from the operations.

    Nuclear expertise is well distributed across the nation, but there are specific cluster areas where many major businesses share research, development and thinking. These include:

    • North England, where Sellafield remains the major centre for the maintenance of nuclear skills
    • South West England, where EDF Energy has established a base and Horizon Nuclear Power has begun deployment
    • Yorkshire and the Humber, where growth is occurring around Sheffield, which is home to the Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre

    The UK has a growing low carbon economy. Current investment in projects to build cleaner energy power stations is estimated to be worth 180 billion GBP.

  • Future opportunities

    The government have backed plans to develop the next generation of Small Modular Reactors (SMR), a technology which could play an important role in the world’s clean energy future.

    Government have made a further commitment to invest at least £250 million in nuclear research and development. This includes a competition to find the best value SMR designs.

    According to the National Nuclear Laboratory, the global SMR market it’s estimated that the global SMR market will be approximately 65-85 GW by 2035 and valued at 250 to 400 billion GBP. If the economics of this approach prove competitive, there could be significant advantages for businesses involved in the UK’s development programme.

  • UK government support

    There are government and privately backed initiatives in place to help develop further skills and knowledge in the UK’s nuclear sector. The National College for Nuclear works closely with the industry on a world-class curriculum that delivers high-level technical training and development.

    The government also has up to 50 billion GBP available to support finance and insurance for supplies from within the UK to buyers outside the UK. This support takes the form of guarantees, insurance and loans issued by its export credit agency, UK Export Finance.

  • Next steps

    We can help you grow your business in the UK

    Whether you’ve already decided to grow your business here or you’re just starting your research, the UK government can help you make the right decision.

    Research your industry

    You should research your market to help you decide if the UK is the best place for your business. Contact our Investment Services Team to get market research and other expert help and advice.

    Want to move your business to the UK?

    You’ll need to follow several steps before moving to the UK, including applying for visas and finding the ideal location for your business. Read our UK setup guide.

    The UK government can give you free help and support every step of the way. Contact us to find out more.