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Areva seeks to raise capital: CEO

by Staff Writers
Paris (AFP) Jan 13, 2010
The head of French nuclear energy giant Areva said Wednesday the state-controlled company needed more capital and that discussions had begun with strategic investors.

Areva chief executive Anne Lauvergeon told the French parliament's committee on sustainable development that the discussions on capitalisation had reached the "state level."

"We are in talks with a certain number of strategic investors who are now convinced about the company's interest," Lauvergeon said.

"We need to reinforce our own funds in relation with the extraordinary development that we are experiencing," she said.

Areva became the world's top uranium producer last year, doubling its production since the start of the decade, Lauvergeon said.

"We believe that there is today a proven uranium reserve of 70 years. With the fourth generation (of nuclear reactors), this will enable us to have 5,000 years of uranium reserves," she said.

The aim of future fourth generation reactors is to make more efficient use of nuclear fuel.

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