Russian nuclear industry earned $3.5 billion on export in 2004

According to Rumyantsev, it can be explained by the higher prices for the nuclear fuel and uranium products in 2004. The Russian-American HEU-LEU contract generates a stable annual income equal $450-470m, TVEL corporation earned $1 billion, he added. HEU-LEU contract was signed about 11 years ago and stipulates down-blending of the weapon grade plutonium into the low enrichment uranium, which could be used as fuel at the US nuclear plants.

Alexander Rumyantsev complained that no new contracts for nuclear power plants construction abroad has been signed in 2004, but in 2005 China might announce a tender for construction of two reactor units. The head of Rosatom also mentioned that all the technical problems (cracks on the steam generator pipes) at the first reactor unit of Tianwan nuclear power plant, are solved. “The first reactor is practically ready for start-up” he added. Rosatom representatives are hoping to launch the second reactor at the Tianwan nuclear power plant in the end of this year, Kommersant reported.

Concerning India, Rumyantsev said there are “factors for delay in the construction schedule” again due to the equipment faults, but it could be solved as well. Cooperation with Iran did not raise big concerns and reactor in Bushehr is to be launched in the end of this year, and connected to the grid in 2006, Rumyantsev said. ”It goes well with foreign cooperation as we manage to build five units simultaneously, but we are building to little home” complained the head of the Russian Nuclear Agency.

On December 16, 2004, unit no.3 was launched at the Kalinin NPP. The completion of the resumed reactor’s construction turned out to be more expensive than construction of a new reactor abroad – the price-tag for the new third reactor at the Kalinin NPP reached $1.3 billion. Rosatom specialists have not decided yet which unit should be completed next. There are three unfinished reactors in Russia: the unit no.2 at the Volgodonsk NPP, unit no.5 at the Balakovo NPP, and unit no.5 at the Kursk NPP, Kommersant reported.