19 Apr (NucNet): Russia’s state nuclear corporation Rosatom is ready to provide Bulgaria with any “necessary support” for the project to resume the construction of the Belene nuclear power station.
Rosatom first deputy head Kirill Komarov told a press conference at the Atomexpo event in Sochi that whether Rosatom becomes an investor or not, it will provide all possible assistance to Bulgaria to implement the project to build two nuclear plants in northern Bulgaria near the border with Romania.
He said Rosatom had already told Bulgaria it would be willing to act as a consultant for the project.
He said he believes Belene can be built faster than any other new-build project in Europe given that all the key components are ready.
Last month Bulgarian state energy company NEK announced the start of an investor selection procedure for the Belene project.
NEK said it is looking for an investor for the construction of Belene with options to take a minority stake in a future project company or purchase electricity to be generated by the facility.
In 2008, Bulgaria ordered two Russian VVER-1000 pressurised water reactor units for Belene, but the project was cancelled in 2012 because of financial and political considerations.
A 2016 arbitration settlement awarded Bulgaria most of the nuclear equipment already produced by Russia for Belene under the 2008 agreement.