To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, what freedom of information (FOI) requests her Department has received on evidence submitted to the European Commission as part of the UK's challenge to the decision made by the European Commission on the application for state aid for Hinkley Point C; and what responses have been made to each such FOI request.
21 July 2015
The Department of Energy and Climate Change has received two relevant requests. The first in October 2014 asked:
Please would you send me under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 full documentation provided to the European Commission is support of the UK application for State Aid agreement on the Hinkley Point C nuclear project, in electronic format if possible, including: a report by KPMG on potential distortions to competition; a report by Oxera on market failures, proportionality and potential distortions of competition; a study by Pöyry on potential distortions to the internal market and alternatives to new nuclear; report by Redpoint on the evolution of the UK electricity sector; & details of the Cost Discovery and Verification process, compiled by KPMG and LeighFisher;
The second in December 2014 asked :
I seek disclosure of seven specific documents which the British government appear to have submitted to the EC in defence of its proposed state subsidy to EDF to build nuclear reactors at Hinkley Point in Somerset. The EC approved this state subsidy on 8th October 14.
We know of the existence of these documents following a leaked paper as reported by German newspaper der Spiegel. The leaked paper was drafted under the supervision of outgoing competition commissioner Joaquín Almunia. It references these seven documents as follows:
· Modelling work by DECC and analysis of counterfactual scenarios;
· Report by Oxera on market failures, proportionality, and potential distortions of competition;
· Poyry study on potential distortions to the internal market and alternatives to nuclear;
· Redpoint report on the evolution of the electricity sector;
· A description of Cost Discovery and Verification process, which involved KPMG and LeighFisher;
· KPMG report on potential distortions to competition;
· Benchmarking work on the rate of return.
In both instances all information held by DECC was withheld and both decisions are now being appealed to the Information Commissioner’s Office.