French stimulus plan to include hydropower modernization

France’s economic recovery minister says national utility Electricite de France (EDF) will invest more than 2 billion euros (US$2.5 billion) as part of France’s economic stimulus program, including spending on modernization of EDF hydroelectric projects.

Patrick Devedjian, minister in charge of the plan of revival, told business daily La Tribune the government and EDF management were negotiating details of an investment plan that he would fully announce in two weeks.

“Without giving away too much about what is being negotiated, I think possibly there will be a modernization of the production system,” Devedjian said in the interview published March 6. “In hydroelectrics, for example, there is broad scope for works.”

In recent months, EDF has issued several solicitations for hydropower equipment and other work for its many projects, including up to 50 turbine-generators over five years. (HNN 2/5/09)

“France could have more electricity micro-plants and the modernization of our dams has become necessary,” Devedjian said. (HNN 7/21/08)

The minister added the electricity transmission network will increase its investments 23 percent to 1.03 billion euros (US$1.3 billion).

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