Bulgarian Govt, Westinghouse Move Closer to Cooperation
Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borisov has met with Westinghouse President for EMEA Anders Jackson and VP for Southern Europe Jose Gutierrez.
Friday's meeting in Sofia is the latest in a series of meetings between the Bulgarian government and the US energy giant, and is the most high-profile one.
It was also attended by Bulgarian Minister of Economy, Energy, and Tourism Traicho Traikov and US Ambassador to Bulgaria James Warlick.
Its talks focused on discussing the results of Westinghouse's modernization of Units 5 and 6 of the Bulgarian nuclear power plant Kozloduy.
Another topic on the agenda was the possibility of having Westinghouse supply nuclear fuel for the Bulgarian reactors, which have used only Russian nuclear fuel to date.
The Bulgarian government has pointed out that Westinghouse is highly experienced in the putting out of operation of nuclear reactors with water cooling systems such as those in Kozloduy, and the US corporation is considering setting up a joint venture with a Bulgarian firm for such services.
The Westinghouse executives presented to the Bulgarian Prime Minister the parameters of the AP 1000 third-generation reactor.
The Bulgarian Energy Holding, a state-owned corporation, and Westinghouse are expected to sign a nuclear energy cooperation memorandum.
US company Westinghouse has showed renewed interested in investments in Bulgaria's only operational nuclear power plant Kozloduy, Minister of Economy, Energy, and Tourism Traicho Traikov said after the last meeting he had with the US corporation in April in Spain.
The name of Westinghouse has been mentioned as a possible contractor to build additional two units to Kozloduy, a project that is still very much up in the air.
Westinghouse was moreover mentioned as a possible participant in the execution of the projected Belene NPP, where the main contractor is Russian Atomstroyexport.
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I have to admit that for a NPP in Bulgaria, I would have a strong bias towards American technology and especially Westinghouse. These guys are real pros.
And it also makes sense from a diversification standpoint. Bulgaria has already the Russian technology. Why not get an American one too and compare, experience the difference and draw conclusions from it.
Just a thought.