Saturday, November 4, 2017

Rosatom to bid for big Saudi nuclear plant projects

Russian nuclear group Rosatom has expressed its interest and sent its initial proposals to Saudi Arabia for its mega nuclear reactors projects in the kingdom and said it would bid once tenders are floated, said a report.

Saudi Arabia is considering building 17.6 gigawatts (GW) of nuclear capacity by 2032, the equivalent of about 17 reactors, making it one of the biggest prospects for an industry struggling after the 2011 nuclear disaster in Japan, reported Reuters.

Saudi Arabia - the world's biggest exporter of oil - wants to reduce the amount of crude it burns at home to generate electricity so it can sell more of it overseas, it stated.

After Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak met Saudi King Salman in Riyadh to discuss global oil prices on Thursday, the Russian Energy Ministry's Twitter feed quoted Novak saying that "cooperation on the peaceful atom could be key".

Meanwhile, industry sources said that Korean group led by its hydro and nuclear power company (KHN) and French energy major EDF have already expressed interest to build nuclear reactors in Saudi Arabia, stated Reuters report.

Rosatom said in September it was "ready to build 16 nuclear power plants in Saudi Arabia" at a cost of $100 billion under a 2015 intergovernmental agreement (IGA) with the country.

Following the financial troubles of French Areva and Toshiba-owned Westinghouse, it has become a dominant player in the global nuclear industry.

The Russian group has built reactors in several former Soviet countries as well as in China and India. It also has contracts to build reactors in Finland, Turkey, Argentina, Bangladesh and other countries.

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