“We expect the commissioning of Unit 3 to happen around 2030- 2031, which means that the actual construction works would start around 2024,” Mr Ghita said during an online seminar organised by local economic newspaper Ziarul Financiar.
He said the company is close to completing a feasibility study for the project and will submit it for approval to shareholders shortly.
In October 2020, Romania and the US signed a draft cooperation agreement for the construction of Cernavodă-3 and -4 and the refurbishment of Cernavodă-1.
Earlier, Nuclearelectrica had ended talks with China General Nuclear (CGN) about the Cernavodă construction and refurbishment project in June after they had dragged on for six years.
Neither Nuclearelectrica nor the government has said why Romania cancelled the deal with CGN. Press reports in Romania said CGN had been criticised by Romania’s “strategic partners” over security issues tied to the use of Chinese technology. Reports also said there had been cost concerns related to the Cernavodă project.
Cernavodă has two commercially operational Candu 6 pressurised heavy water reactors supplied by Atomic Energy of Canada Ltd and built under the supervision of a Canadian-Italian consortium of AECL and Ansaldo.
Unit 1 began commercial operation in 1996. Unit 2 was subsequently completed and began commercial operation in 2007. Efforts to resume work on Cernavodă-3 and -4 began in 2003.