Originally, the UK-based oil services firm was looking to sell its nuclear operations after considering them to be non-core. Amec Foster claims to have generated a significant level of interest and had received a number of attractive bids for its nuclear business.

However, it has decided to retain the European nuclear unit while going ahead with the sale of its North American nuclear business which had generated £83m revenue in 2016 along with a profit of £1m.

The disposal of the North American nuclear division is expected to be over in the course of the year.

Amec Foster has revealed that its change in decision regarding the sale of its nuclear business was after consulting the board of John Wood Group.

Last month, the Wood Group had offered to sell a majority of Amec Foster's oil and gas business in the UK North Sea to tackle competition concerns regarding their merger deal.

The £2.2bn merger deal has been facing hurdles after the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) initiated a probe in May on alleged violation of competition laws by the Wood Group and Amec Foster. It is slated to be completed in the latter half of the year if it meets various conditions including a clearance from the CMA.

The transaction is expected to result in major cost and revenue synergies for the combined entity which will be owned 56% by Wood Group shareholders and 44% by Amec shareholders.