Paris — French state-controlled energy company EDF said stoppages at its nuclear plants are costing more than expected, with the sums set to weigh on its annual figures.
EDF's operating profit is expected to be about €29 billion ($29 billion) lower this year, the company said on Thursday, a greater sum than the €24 billion impact that had initially been forecast.
French nuclear power plants will probably only produce electricity in the lower end of the range of 280 to 300 billion terawatt hours this year, the statement added.
Next year, the amount of electricity is expected to rise to 300 to 330 terawatt hours, and for 2024, EDF management is still eyeing 315 to 345 terawatt hours.
More than half the country's fleet of 56 nuclear power stations are out of action for maintenance, with many showing corrosion cracks in crucial components. This has caused serious problems in a country heavily reliant on nuclear-generated electricity.
Issues around nuclear power generation hit France at a bad time, as due to sanctions against Russia over the war in Ukraine, the availability of natural gas is already lower than usual.
Energy prices are soaring and on Wednesday, the government also announced that it would cap an increase in household electricity bills at 15% from February 2023.
France moved to cap energy price increases a year ago to help keep consumer prices under control.
The French government is also planning to wholly take over EDF. It currently owns a little more than 80% of the company. The government is planning to pay nearly €10 billion to take over the outstanding shares.
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