Energy Bill Form

March 26, 2024

Rishi Sunak to Invest £750 Million into UK Nuclear Industry

On Monday 25th March 2024, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak announced that the UK government will invest more than £200 million in the nuclear industry over the next decade. Additional funds of up to £550 million aim to boost the UK’s energy security and national security in nuclear energy.

What Was the Announcement?

The UK government has declared a ‘national endeavour’ to secure the UK’s nuclear power industry by committing to a £200 million package to invest in skills, jobs, communities, and more.

Rishi Sunak stated that the UK's nuclear capacity is vital for the country's energy security and for securing cheaper, more reliable energy for consumers. The industry is growing rapidly and will require 50% more skilled workers in the next decade, according to reports.

The UK Government is partnering with private investors in the industry, including BAE Systems, Rolls-Royce, EDF, and Babcock, to bring the total investment in skills, jobs, and education to at least £763 million by 2030.

What Will The Money Go Towards?

According to the UK government, the UK’s nuclear industry is experiencing unprecedented growth spurred by ambitious nuclear energy targets. Industry experts claim that the investment will help to reach Net Zero targets and achieve the goal of increasing the UK’s energy security.

As a result, a significant portion of the funds will go towards educating and training a new wave of the workforce. The industry is expected to need 123,000 people by 2030, and the investment will help create more than 8,000 new career opportunities and generate over 40,000 jobs in the industry.

It will also support plans to double the number of nuclear apprentices and graduates and quadruple the number of specialist science and nuclear fission PhDs.

£20 million, with an additional £20 million per year for the next 10 years, is being invested in the UK nuclear submarine building site in Barrow-in-Furness, following plans to bring new Dreadnought Class submarines into service in the early 2030s.

What Have the Experts Said?

David Lockwoord, CEO of Babcock

David Lockwood, CEO of Babcock International and member of the Nuclear Skills Executive Council, said:

“This is a fantastic opportunity for the UK to deliver a stronger nuclear industry that will contribute to the resilience of the UK’s independent deterrent and will support the UK’s energy security ambitions and Net Zero targets. As well as providing bedrock support for the ambitious development required across industry and government for the AUKUS program."
“Babcock is proud of the leading role it is taking in driving forward initiatives to retain and grow the critical mass of nuclear skills we need today and tomorrow. We have a keen focus on our major nuclear sites in the South West of England and in Scotland and are determined to leverage the benefits of the NNSPS, with our customers and other industry partners, across the broader communities we serve.”

Simon Rossi, CEO of EDF

Simone Rossi, CEO of EDF in the UK and member of the Nuclear Skills Executive Council, said:

“EDF welcomes the joint commitments announced today and looks forward to working with Government and industry to help deliver great opportunities for people who choose to work in the nuclear sector."
“EDF has been at the heart of the UK’s nuclear energy sector for over 15 years and in 2024 is hiring a further 1,000 people into its UK nuclear family – in operations, construction, engineering support, and many other exciting roles. The majority of these will be apprentices and graduates, as well as those with relevant skills from other industries."
“As we have learned in recent years, there is an urgent need to attract, train, and inspire the next generation of people who can design, build, operate, and decommission existing and new nuclear facilities. We are excited to be part of this national endeavour.”
Back to the blog
By clicking “Accept All Cookies”, you agree to the storing of cookies on your device to enhance site navigation, analyze site usage, and assist in our marketing efforts. View our Privacy Policy for more information.