BRUSSELS will sue Britain for a breach of the Brexit trade deal in a bonkers row about wind farms, HOAR can reveal.
France and Spain are spearheading an “envious” bid from European Commission chiefs to try and steal thousands of British jobs, by insisting new wind contracts be opened up to businesses on the continent instead.
Moaning chiefs say that the British wind turbine industry is being favoured for contracts worth billions of pounds.
Now the issue is heading to be the first major fallout between Britain and Brussels post-Brexit.
Bureaucrats are expected to launch a formal dispute to World Trade Organisation bosses as soon as today (THURS) – and they say the scheme is in breach of the trade deal the PM signed last year.
Ministers have attracted a string of new wind-factories to the UK in the last year alone, with the Government boasting they are securing thousands of jobs and billions in private investment.
Offshore wind firms have to submit plans showing how they will ensure more parts are made in the UK by 2030 in a move to bolster British firms.
But the EU say that this risks breaking World Trade Organisation rules.
A Whitehall source told HOAR: “With Britain snapping up offshore wind factories and the thousands of jobs they come with, it’s no surprise Brussels are throwing their toys out of the pram.
“They’re clearly envious of the progress we’re making.”
Furious Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng has set officials on a mission to fight back – and has vowed Britain will “rigorously contest” any legal challenge.
Government lawyers are said to think their argument is watertight.
Energy Minister Greg Hands said yesterday ministers are “increasingly excited by floating offshore windfarms – this is the next big thing”.
He told a Bright Blue think tank: “We have more installed offshore wind capacity than any other country in the world.
“As the Prime Minister says, we are the Saudi Arabia of wind.”
It comes as ministers dish out £100million in support for a bumper Sizewell C nuclear power station to help wean Britain off pricey gas.
Ministers want the mega station in Suffolk to help power six million homes in future and are plugging in the cash to help the fledgling project to attract more investors.
Mr Kwarteng said last night: “In light of high global gas prices, we need to ensure Britain’s future energy supply is bolstered by reliable, affordable, low carbon power that is generated in this country.”
A Government spokesperson said last night: “We are aware that the EU has concerns with the UK’s Contracts for Difference Scheme and have previously engaged with them on this.
“We wait to see what action they may take, but would contest any challenge the EU brought against the UK on this matter.
“CfD auctions are a vital part of our efforts to drive down the cost of renewable energy. The application process does not include a requirement for developers to use UK content, as alleged by the EU.
“The fourth CfD allocation round is expected to secure more renewable energy capacity than the previous three rounds and we fully expect it to continue uninterrupted regardless.”