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Mitsubishi Heavy, Japan Nuclear Fuel to invest in struggling Areva

Japanese companies eye nuclear power plant exports amid low domestic demend

TOKYO -- Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and Japan Nuclear Fuel are finalizing plans to invest in French nuclear giant Areva, which is currently in the throes of restructuring.

The two companies will take stakes in Areva to a combined 10% by jointly injecting 40 billion yen to 50 billion yen ($352 million to $440 million) by January 2017.

With demand for new nuclear power plants not expected in Japan, the companies will buttress exports for emerging countries through the partnership with Areva.

Currently, the French government has an investment of less than 90% in the company, both directly and indirectly. The government plans to split off the company's unprofitable businesses and rehabilitate the French company. It will lower its holding to under 70% and accept foreign investment to make up the rest

Along with Mitsubishi Heavy and Japan Nuclear Fuel, China National Nuclear Corp. may also become an investor.

Mitsubishi Heavy has already revealed plans to invest in Areva and a subsidiary while holding talks with the French government and the struggling company over the deal.

Areva has booked significant losses following a series of delays and cancellations to plant-construction projects and now finds itself going through a financial crisis.

 (Nikkei)

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