EDF Says “Au Revoir” to Maryland?

Marylanders will always be grateful for the appearance of the French fleet at the battle of Yorktown near the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay which ended the British occupation.

The benefits of EDF’s wheeling and dealing with Constellation Energy have never been quite so clear.  (The French government holds an 84 percent stake in EDF.)

Now it seems that all of the huffing and puffing may have been for naught.  The Financial Times reports that Paris may be about to pull out of the deal:

EDF, the French nuclear power operator, faces pressure from the government to abandon its US foray, where regulatory difficulties have delayed a $4.5bn deal with Constellation Energy.

M. Proglio, selected by French President Nicholas Sarkozy to take over as EDF’s chairman next month, told a parliamentary committee:

…that he was “not sure that [the US deal] needed to be done”.

Apparently, the Constellation deal was a “projet” of the outgoing chairman.

UPDATE: The Wall Street Journal has a different take:

“The process is in progress,” an EDF spokeswoman said Friday, adding that the company is waiting for a decision from regulators in the U.S. state of Maryland, where Constellation is based.

SECOND UPDATE: Reuters posted a story at 1:22 p.m.:

Maryland utility regulators on Friday approved Constellation Energy Group Inc’s (CEG.N) sale of a stake in its nuclear unit to Electrite de France (EDF.PA) if the companies comply with several conditions, including a $110.5 million payment to Baltimore utility customers.

The Maryland Public Service Commission set a deadline of November 6 for the companies to respond.

What’s French for “poker?”

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