A 50/50 joint venture between Bouygues and Laing O'Rourke has been named preferred bidder for a £2 billion (€2.5 billion) contract to build a new nuclear power station at Hinkley Point C in Somerset, UK.
Client EDF is currently awaiting planning consent and is to make a final investment decision for the project by the end of 2012.
The joint venture has entered into a preliminary agreement for early contractor involvement which will see the two companies working on the development of the design, construction methodology and programme for the project.
EDF Energy chief executive Vincent de Rivaz said, "2012 is a defining year for new nuclear. We will continue our discussions with [UK] government about agreeing a legally robust investment framework. Agreeing the contract for difference is key - it means that we and government will have to be clear about our costs before we sign a contract for our project."