Paks II building work to start soon, says Russian president

21/09/2018 08:19 Nuclear


Construction of two new units at the Paks nuclear power plant in Hungary is expected to start soon, Russian President Vladimir Putin said during a press conference in Moscow on 18 September, following his talks with Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán.

The Paks plant, which is 100 km south of Budapest, currently comprises four Russian-supplied VVER-440 pressurised water reactors, which started up between 1982 and 1987. Russia and Hungary signed an inter-governmental agreement in early 2014 for Russian enterprises and their international sub-contractors to supply two VVER-1200 reactors at Paks, including a Russian state loan of up to EUR10.0 billion (USD11.2 billion) to finance 80% of the project, which is known as Paks II.


Putin said: “There are good opportunities for Russian-Hungarian cooperation in the nuclear power industry. Rosatom will soon start building two new units at the Paks nuclear power plant.”


Orbán added that Paks II is a “flagship of cooperation between East and West”, and “must be carried out to the end”. He said: “We will do it. This will be our common success and will not only benefit Hungarian-Russian relations but will also modernise the energy infrastructure of the European Union. This is why there is so much interest, and this is why there are so many opponents and so many supporters.”


Putin said: “This is really a natural choice because part of this power plant was built with Russian technology and it is operational. Specialists understand it, and for them it is natural to continue cooperating with us. I would like to note that this is not the only example of cooperation with an EU country in nuclear energy. We are carrying out a similar project with Finland. Therefore, we continue to cooperate with the EU although competition there is high.”


Orbán noted that the Paks plant generates 40% of Hungary’s electricity.


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