Bulgaria signs contract with Russian AtomStroyExport for Belene nuclear plant

Publish date: December 1, 2006

Bulgaria's national power grid operator NEC on November 29th signed a 3.9 billion euro agreement with a group led by Russia's AtomStroyExport to build a new 2,000 MW nuclear power plant at the Danube town of Belene.

The contractor will install two 1000 MW reactors.

The first reactor will be ready in 5.5 years while the second will be finished in 6.5 years. The agreement obliges AtomStroyExport to subcontract local companies for 30% of the project value which means that construction, assembly, equipment supply and transportation companies will fight it out for orders totalling 1.2 bln euro.

AtomStroyExport president Sergei Shmatko said the project will involve Ukrainian and Czech companies as well. The financial packaging of the project will become clear by mid-2007, said NEC chief executive director Lyubomir Velkov.

The construction schedule will start to be implemented early next year, Atomstroyexport’s president said after the signing ceremony. Project execution would start in the beginning of 2007, Focus news agency reported.

Russia was ready to provide a state loan to Bulgaria for the power plant construction. The project was good enough and additional state guarantees for the loan would be unnecessary, Shmatko said. According to NEC’s Velkov money for the power plant construction would be provided in 2007.

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