EU Experts Arrive in Bulgaria to Start N-Plant Peer Review

Politics | November 16, 2003, Sunday // 00:00| Views: | Comments: 0
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Eleven nuclear power experts of the European Commission will attend the peer review on units 3 and 4 of Bulgaria's only nuclear power plant in Kozloduy instead of the expected twelve. It became clear on Sunday that Ireland's representative will not attend the meeting due to personal reasons.

France's representative pointed at his arrival that he hadn't enough time to study the information, given to him by the Bulgarian side, in details. He expressed his hope to do this in the next days, while the peer review takes place.

The experts are scheduled to meet on December 2 in Brussels, where each of them will present the part he is responsible for, France's representative added. The European Commission will prepare a project over the review results, which will be ready in few months, it was also announced.

Also on Sunday the Bulgarian committee that opposes the closing of the nuke insisted that the results of the peer review are presented by the end of 2003.

The Bulgarian government has agreed to close the plant's 440-megawatt units 3 and 4 by 2006 under pressure from the EU. However, Bulgaria insists there are serious reasons to demand extension of this deadline.

Over the last 12 years we completed some important reconstruction works in the reactors, and a number of foreign experts voiced appreciation for their high safety level, Bulgaria's Energy Minister Milko Kovachev has said. He claimed that those appraisals proved that modernization efforts had the desired effect.

Experts claim that decommissioning the reactors would result into a financial collapse at Bulgaria's energy sector.

However, many of the EU member countries see the units as too old to be safe.
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