A letter sent to staff by EDF chief executive Jean Bernard Levy last week was ‘probably’ cleared by the French government before dispatch.

Reuters, citing unnamed sources close to the company, reports that Levy would not have sent the letter, which called on the French government to provide additional support for the Hinkley Point C nuclear power project without it having been cleared by the presidency.

Sources familiar with the company’s thinking say the letter should be read as an attempt to mollify French unions who are resisting the project, and also a sign that the government, which owns an 85 percent stake in EDF, has already agreed in principle to give this support.

The news agency added that two other people with knowledge of the situation said they expected more state support for EDF that would allow Hinkley Point to go ahead.

Several sources close to EDF expect a final investment decision will be made before the EDF shareholders meeting on May 12, and possibly at its March 30 board meeting.