Areva's bid to build Czech reactors rejected

PRAGUE -- Czech state-run power utility CEZ says it has rejected a bid by France's state-owned nuclear engineering giant Areva SA to build two more nuclear reactors at the Temelin nuclear plant.

CEZ says Areva's bid has not met necessary criteria to run for the contract, estimated to be worth more than $10 billion. CEZ says in a statement Friday that Areva may appeal.

U.S.-based Westinghouse Electric Co., a subsidiary of Japan's Toshiba Corp. and a consortium led by Russia's Atomstroyexport are the remaining bidders.

The deal is to be signed by the end of 2013. The two reactors would be operational by 2025, bringing the number of Temelin's reactors to four.

The Czechs intend to significantly increase nuclear power production despite last year's disaster at Japan's Fukushima plant.