EDF not involved in French government stake sales: source

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FILE PHOTO: An EDF worker is seen on the construction site of the third-generation European Pressurised Water nuclear reactor (EPR) in Flamanville

AIX-EN-PROVENCE, France (Reuters) – French utility EDF would not be part of the French government’s plan to sell 10 billion euros ($11.40 billion) worth of state assets to finance projects geared toward innovation, a source close to EDF’s management said on Saturday.

The French government owns 83.1 percent in the world’s biggest operator of nuclear plants, which has an 18 billion pound ($23 billion) project to build two nuclear reactors at Hinkley Point, Britain and needs to spend 50 billion euros ($55.7 billion) on upgrading its ageing French nuclear plants.

“The signs that we are receiving are that we are not at all involved,” the source said.

While campaigning for the presidency, Emmanuel Macron said he would set up a 10 billion euro fund to promote industrial and research projects. Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire on Thursday said the sale of state assets would start in September.

(Reporting by Michel Rose; Writing by Maya Nikolaeva; Editing by Stephen Powell)

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