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Business deals

London offers $18bn in loans for Hitachi's UK nuclear plant

Japanese company wants British to share the ballooning burden

A conceptual drawing of Hitachi's nuclear power plant in western Wales. The company wants the U.K. to up its financial commitment as costs rise.

TOKYO -- The British government has proposed to arrange all 2 trillion yen ($18.2 billion) in lending that Hitachi says is needed to build a nuclear power plant in Wales, as the Japanese side seeks to reduce its risk and encourage the U.K. to put more skin in the game.

London had previously suggested that it guarantee 1 trillion yen in lending, but to get the project moving it changed its offer to include approaches such as direct financing in order to reduce Hitachi's financial exposure. The plan also calls for a total investment of 900 billion yen, with Hitachi as well as Japanese and British public-private interests each taking a one-third stake, and guarantees for corporate loans.

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