The British government and EDF, the French energy company, signed the main contract for the new £18 billion Hinkley Point C nuclear power station yesterday. Jean-Bernard Levy, EDF chief executive, joined officials from the UK, France and China at a private ceremony in London. The signing was also attended by Greg Clark, the business secretary, Jean-Marc Ayrault, France’s foreign minister, Nur Bekri, China’s National Energy Administration director, and He Yu, chairman of CGN, the Chinese group that will have a 66 per cent stake in the joint venture. The government gave the green light for the power station in Somerset this month. It will provide electricity for nearly six million homes when it is completed in early 2020 and is the UK’s first new nuclear plant in a generation. Yesterday’s signing was the second attempt at closing the deal after Theresa May unexpectedly announced in July that she wanted to study the contracts more closely. Mr Clark said it was a “crucial moment” adding that Hinkley played “an important part in ensuring our future low-carbon energy security”. CGN said it was delighted to sign all final agreements for the Hinkley Point C project and a number of other agreements relating to Sizewell C in Suffolk and Bradwell B in Essex with EDF and the UK government.