14 Dec (NucNet): Sweden’s state-owned utility Vattenfall said today it had secured long-term nuclear fuel supply for the Ringhals-3 and Ringhals-4 pressurised water reactors in Sweden by signing new commercial contracts with three different suppliers: France’s Areva, Russia’s TVEL and Westinghouse of the US. The value of the contracts amounts to approximately 1.2bn krona (€123m, $130m ) from 2018 until 2025, Vattenfall said. The three contracts are in line with Vattenfall’s procurement strategy of having at least two qualified suppliers of nuclear fuel for each of its reactors, the company said. Fuel related production costs account for about one quarter of the total cost of production at a nuclear plant and the new contracts ensure “enhanced competition” and long-term security of supply. Per-Olof Nestenborg, head of Vattenfall Nuclear Fuel, said: “Long-term supplier independence and competitiveness are necessary preconditions for future nuclear profitability and these agreements are key to securing the required production cost.” Vattenfall is 100% owned by the Swedish state and is one of Europe’s largest generators of electricity. The company owns 10 nuclear reactors. Seven are in Sweden – four at Ringhals and three at Forsmark – and three in Germany at Brunsbüttel, Krümmel and a minority stake in Brokdorf. The three German units are due to be decommissioned because of Germany’s post-Fukushima decision to phase out nuclear energy.