Bulgaria Energy Minister: Nuclear Plant Needs EU Investor

Business » ENERGY | February 27, 2010, Saturday // 12:09| Views: | Comments: 5
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Bulgaria Energy Minister: Nuclear Plant Needs EU Investor: Bulgaria Energy Minister: Nuclear Plant Needs EU Investor Bulgaria’s Economy and Energy Minister, Traicho Traikov, reiterated earlier statements that the Belene Nuclear Power Plant needs a strategic investor other than Russia. Photo by BGNES

Bulgaria’s Economy and Energy Minister, Traicho Traikov, declared that there aren’t any disagreements between him and Finance Minister, Simeon Djankov.

Traikov spoke in an interview for Darik radio Saturday, addressing reports that the two do not see eye to eye regarding the project to build a second Nuclear Power Plant (NPP) in the Danube city of Belene. The reports came in the heels of Djankov’s statements that the NPP would not be built without an European investor and that he would not “give even a penny from the budget to construct Belene.”

As proof for the lack of contradiction, Traikov reminded about his own statements from July, August and September when he said the State cannot afford to undertake the risk to invest billions in the NPP.

The Energy Minister further informed he had asked the assistance of the US Ambassador to Bulgaria, James Warlick, in finding American investors, but pointed out he doubts US businesses would want to invest in Russian technology. Traikov, however, said that European investors would be willing to do so, while the withdrawal of the German RWE in October was due to financial and not technology issues.

The Minister explained that the EUR 1 B invested by Bulgaria so far and the EUR 1 B that would be loaned from Russia would provide for shares of the two countries in the ratio of 51% to 49% respectively. Until the Russian EUR 1 B is exhausted, Bulgaria would be seeking a strategic investor to repay the money to Moscow. In case the search fails, Russia would grant another EUR 1 B credit, to be repaid through future profits while the profit risk is undertaken by Russia, Traikoiv says.

Regarding a publication in the Russian daily Komersant defining the plan as a way for Russia to own for the first time a NPP abroad, the Minister commented he did not understand the Bulgarian obsession to read Russian press, adding Bulgarian media, under similar logic, could write headlines such as “Bulgaria Acquires NPP Shares for Free.”

On February 19, after meeting his Russian counterpart Sergey Shmatko, Bulgaria's Energy Minister informed Russia is going to grant Bulgaria a loan for the Belene construction.

On that same day, the government announced the tender for selecting a financial consultant to help it pick a strategic investor in the Belene NPP.Traikov said after the meeting that a Russian EUR 2 B loan will be granted to Bulgaria without any corporate or state guarantees.

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Tags: Belene, Belene NPP, Nuclear Power Plant, Rosatom, Russia, Sergei Shmatko, Traicho Traikov
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» To the forumComments (5)
cuckooben - 1 Mar 2010 // 21:06:23

So your "strong point" is "nuclear energy" is it Nellie ? You were helping-out at the Chernobyl experiment ?
But this is about economics. How are you on that ? You run a farm, or what ? No, you run a car.
So have you actually worked-out, roughly, what the interest repayments are likely to be on 10 Billion Euro ?. What the running costs are likely to be ? or even how many kW-hrs the "so much energy" to which you refer, can be equated-to for one year ? You haven't ? So what is your "strong point" - if that's not a rude question !
Oh !, you are you going to give us your personal guarrantee that this whole Mega-elephant isn't going to be right around the taxpayers' necks for the next - ..however long the world lasts - No worries then !
I see that it has now Mushroomed to a comfy Ten Billion ? I cannot claim to have done the sums, because it instantly appears plainly obvious that a fraction of this sort of money would provide sufficient Solar hot water and Silicon PV energy - in Bulgaria - to obviate the need certainly for this proposed 2nd plant.
It's probably a waste of type attempting to inform cuckooland dreamers such as yourself that nuclear ppower is the last big mistake that mankind may ever make. "Where ignorance is bliss, tis folly to be wise" You are living demonstration of the ttruth of that one.
So have you bought your penny-worth ?

cuckooben - 1 Mar 2010 // 20:42:16

Yes, quite. And that's the capital invested. But it's the interest on that, plus the running costs, all divided by the kW-hrs supplied per year which gives the price per kW-hr. We are told that this will all be paid-for by consumers of electric. But probably few will want to buy if they can get solar and/or wind energy. So who will pay these people then ? - The taxpayer, who else. We will all be mangled by this obscenity, as I pointed-out earlier.
This is to say nothig of the physical Problems associated with nuclear energy.

NellieotAmerica - 28 Feb 2010 // 21:32:13


" Is there anyone asking the question what the electricity price will be, when Belene is going to cost 10 Billion Euro?"

This nuke will be generating so much electricity that it will pay for itself in 10 years or less. Don't worry your green head with nuclear energy, it is not your strong point.

Jan Haverkamp - Greenpeace - 28 Feb 2010 // 17:22:59

Is there anyone asking the question what the electricity price will be, when Belene is going to cost 10 Billion Euro? Which 'profit' is Traykov talking about?

In whatever setup, with 5000 Euro/kWe installed, Belene will not be able to compete with energy efficiency measures and most renewable energy sources - hydro, biomass, on-shore wind, even off-shore wind and geothermal energy are delivering cheaper electricity than Belene. If Bulgaria does not build that capacity itself, it will be cheaper to import it from countries that did. Who will buy expensive Belene power then?

cuckooben - 27 Feb 2010 // 21:05:00

So first we get that the finance minister will not put so much as one further single stutinka into the Belene NPP, then we hear that "Bulgaria will be given a loan by Russia". Then we hear that taxpayers will not be burdened with the payments, which will come entirely from buyers of electricity. Am I right so far ?. I thinks so.
Well this should all add-up to one Big incentive for consumers to find, and invest in, Domestic Wind and Solar energy systems !!. Well done Energy minister and Finance minister. To me, at least, it looks like you've done the best in a horrible situation, and I would like to thank you for that. You could have done even More damage - with a capital Emm !.
So is the 1Bn already put into the project still to be paid-for ? Can anyone point me at a suitable news item ?

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