TROUBLED Japanese giant Toshiba is set to take over the company planning to bring nuclear new build to Cumbria.

The firm has announced that it will buy French firm ENGIE's 40 per cent stake in NuGen, which has plans for a power plant at Moorside, near Sellafield. Added to the 60 per cent of NuGen already owned by Toshiba, this will make it the company's sole owner.

It has also repeated its statement that it is looking for new investors for the project.

The move has come about as a result of Toshiba's US nuclear division Westinghouse Electric filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy last week. This triggered clauses in NuGen'e shareholder agreement which allowed ENGIE to sell its stake to Toshiba.

In a statement to the Tokyo Stock Exchange, Toshiba said it would pay about 15.3bn yen (more then £111m) for ENGIE's shares.

This statement added: "Toshiba will continue to look for investors interested in investing in NuGen and seek to sell off its holding in the company. Toshiba will ensure prompt disclosure of information when neccessary."

Toshiba has forecast a 713bn yen (£5bn) loss in its nuclear business and its woes stem mainly from Westinghouse. In January the company announced the subsidiary may have overpaid - by several billion dollars - for another nuclear construction and services business.

One company which has said it is interested in buying into NuGen is Korea Electric Power Corporation (Kepco).

Business Secretary Greg Clark is visiting South Korea this week and it has been rumoured - though not confirmed - that he will be meeting representatives from Kepco on this trip.

A spokesman for NuGen said: "NuGen can today (April 4, 2017) confirm ENGIE has signalled its intention to withdraw from the NuGen joint venture.

"ENGIE declared its intention to sell its 40 per cent shareholding in NuGen. Toshiba will become the 100 per cent owner of NuGen.

"NuGen’s board is now fully focused on concluding this shareholding transfer from ENGIE to Toshiba to enable NuGen’s Moorside Project to drive forward."

He added: "NuGen has been working tirelessly to bring-in additional investment to support the Moorside project as it works towards helping to deliver a low-carbon future for the


"ENGIE was a founding shareholder of NuGen and was instrumental in creating the company and NuGen recognises with gratitude their contribution to the Moorside project."