Helmut Engelbrecht said that he was disappointed to see a country that had made a commitment to nuclear power in the 1950s fail to have developed a skilled industry of its own.
“It’s just unfortunate that countries who have had the best experience, like the UK, are relying on foreign technology,” said Mr Engelbrecht, a German national.
“I find that a pity. OK, in my country they have made a political decision not to pursue it. But Britain has had this good track record of safe and reliable operation. Why are they just giving in to American or French solutions instead of doing their own thing?”
Mr Engelbrecht, 60, said that when he first developed his own interest in technology and science, “nuclear was the place to go”. But “despite doing an excellent job in winning public opinion round”, Britain now found itself reliant on the likes of France’s EDF to build the next generation of nuclear plants.
Plans for the £14bn Hinkley Point C plant in Somerset, the first reactor for a generation, remain in doubt. EDF and the Government are deadlocked in negotiations over the “strike price” – the amount that consumers will pay for electricity from the plant for up to 40 years.