Finland's Olkiluoto power station was meant to symbolise the resurrection of nuclear power after the 1986 Chernobyl disaster and to act as a showcase for Areva of France's new EPR reactor technology.

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Instead, Olkiluoto has become a showcase for the hassles, delays and cost-overruns that critics say always bedevil nuclear projects. Finland's fifth nuclear plant is now only expected to start operation in 2012 - three years late - and to cost €4.5bn, 50 per cent more than originally planned.

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