Belene N-Plant Investor Talks Enter Final Stage

Business | April 4, 2008, Friday // 00:00| Views: | Comments: 0
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Bulgaria: Belene N-Plant Investor Talks Enter Final Stage Investor talks for 49% stake in Bulgaria's planned Belene nuclear plant have entered a final stage. Photo by NEK

Bulgaria's state power grid operator NEK said the negotiations with the two foreign bidders vying for a 49% stake in the country's planned nuclear power plant of Belene entered a final stage.

Details about the offers of Belgian Electrabel and German RWE will be released in the next few weeks, NEK officials said, adding that the company will take its time before choosing the operator of the new plant.

According to unofficial sources, the current favourite is RWE with proposed EUR 400 M immediate investments in the project.

The amount of money that NEK is going to receive from the chosen investor is also a crucial factor for the final decision, the grid operator confirmed.

Bulgaria's economy ministry has set mid-2008 as the deadline to pick the strategic investor.

Czech CEZ, German E.ON, and Italy's Enel were the other companies that submitted bids in October last year and put in sweetened offers in January but were eventually rejected.

The long-awaited EUR 4 B deal for Belene's construction that will see Russia's state-owned Atomstroyexport design and build the two 1000 MW reactors was sealed at the end of January during the visit of Russian President Vladimir Putin to Sofia, more than a year after Bulgaria picked the firm.

Construction on the units is expected to begin in the second half of the year, with 2014 and 2015 as the tentative deadlines for the two reactors to start.
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