French utility EDF (Euronext: EDF)has been turned down for a license to operate a new nuclear reactor at Calvert Cliffs in Mary land after the US regulator ruled that the bid contravenes its foreign ownership law.

The Atomic Safety and Licensing Board, part of the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission, denied the application on the grounds that foreign companies, such as EDF, are not allowed to control US nuclear plants.

Nuclear power plant

EDF had been hoping to keep its licence application alive on the grounds that it was looking for an American partner in the project.

The US regulator has added that “should the foreign ownership situation change, [the] applicants may motion to reopen the record”.

The decision is also a blow to the hopes of Areva, the French nuclear engineering company, which would have supplied the reactor.

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