Russians, Czechs to Team Up in Bulgarian Nuke Construction

Business | April 12, 2006, Wednesday // 00:00| Views: | Comments: 0
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Russian company "Atomstroyexport" is considering teaming up with Czech "Skoda" for the building of Bulgaria's Second Nuclear Power Plant in Belene, media reported.

The two bidders may unite, if the Bulgarian government decides to go through with the project, Vladimir Porigin, head of the Atomstroyexport division for construction of new NPP abroad has said.

Bulgaria's government had to choose the option that is cheapest to finance, and that offers the lowest electricity price, Porigin said for Dnevnik daily newspaper. The procedure allowed for creating such consortiums during the bids for Belene, he added.

The National Electricity Company (NEC) in Bulgaria would be ready with their choice of a contractor for the Belene plant construction by the beginning of June, Porigin believes.

Bulgaria's government has decided to build two 1,000-megawatt reactors of the VVER 1000 type at the site at Belene. The first unit should be ready by 2012, NEC plans. The total value of the whole project is about EUR 2 B to EUR 4 B and the contractor's bids were introduced in early February.

NEC have already addressed about a thousand procedural questions at Atomstroyexport, and the company is expected to answer 800 of them by Friday. The Russian company, on the other hand, has received offers from about 20 Bulgarian companies that wish to become subcontractors to the project. Atomstroyexport is yet to audit the companies.

Russian Gazprombank is also a strategic investor in the project, and the Russian government has granted a loan to guarantee the financing of the Belene plant construction. Atomstroyexport is to work together with Framatom, the company that will deliver and assemble the equipment for the Nuclear Power Plant.
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