Rosatom Wins Tender To Build Jordan’s First Nuclear Plant

By Lubomir Mitev
29 October 2013

29 Oct (NucNet): Russian state atomic energy corporation Rosatom has won the tender process for the construction of Jordan’s first nuclear power plant, Jordan state news agency Petra has said.

Rosatom will build the plant in the Amra region, 60 kilometres east of the northern city of Zarqa, the news agency said, quoting Khalen Toukan, chairman of the Jordan Atomic Energy Commission (JAEC).

Russian nuclear vendor Atomstroyexport, a Rosatom subsidiary, will supply the reactor and nuclear technology. Rusatom Overseas, another Rosatom subsidiary, will be a strategic partner and operator of the plant, Mr Toukan said.

The plant will consist of two AES-92 versions of the VVER-1000 light-water reactor type, with a power production capacity of 1,000 megawatts (MW) each. The same design is being used for two units under construction at the Kudankulam nuclear plant in southern India.

Jordan’s information minister Mohammad Momani was quoted as saying the plant will cost about 10 billion US dollars (about 7.2 billion euros).

Mr Toukan said the Russian side will contribute 49 percent of the project’s costs and the Jordanian government will contribute the remaining 51 percent. Financing options remain open and a build-own-operate (BOO) agreement could be established.

The BOO principle was applied by Rosatom in its winning bid for the Akkuyu nuclear plant in Turkey, under which it receives a stake in the company building the plant, provides technical expertise and most of the financing, undertakes construction and finally operates the facility.

Rosatom has asked the Jordanian government make a permanent source of water available for the cooling of the reactor, Mr Toukan said.

In May 2012, JAEC narrowed down the candidates for its first nuclear plant to Rosatom and Atmea, an Areva-Mitsubishi Heavy Industries joint venture. Atmea’s bid proposed the 1,100 MW Atmea-1 reactor design, which has not yet been built anywhere.

Areva issued a statement today saying it acknowledged the decision made by JAEC not to select its bid for the project.

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