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World's largest offshore wind developer Orsted cuts back production targets as costs mount

The world's largest offshore wind developer has scaled back development targets and announced hundreds of job cuts as the renewable industry struggles under the pressure of rising costs.

Orsted, the company developing the Norfolk coast windfarm, Hornsea 3, also suspended shareholder payments in an effort to strengthen its balance sheet.

In common with the industry more broadly, Orsted has been hit by high inflation, raised interest rates, project delays and supply chain difficulties in recent years.

Up to 800 jobs are to go as the company - which owns a big chunk of the UK offshore wind energy capacity - pulls out of the Spanish, Portuguese and Norwegian wind markets.

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Wind power generation targets are being revised downwards at the Danish company. By the end of the decade it hopes to produce 35 to 38 gigawatts (GW), down from the previous target of 50 GW, as it hopes to reduce expenditure.

A gigawatt of energy can supply roughly a million homes with electricity.

The announcement follows a UK auction to provide renewable energy which received no bids.

The price on offer was simply too low, industry said.

Orsted shares fell 2% on Wednesday having fallen more than 30% in the past six months since September.

As a result, billions was wiped off the company valuation and its share price reached a five-year low.