Armenian Energy Minister Karen Galustyan has visited Moscow to try and restructure the country’s gas and nuclear fuel debts. Russia threatened to suspend supplies when Armenia’s fuel debts rose to $16 million, preventing refuelling of Armenia 2. Galustyan claims that Armenia has $11 million of credit stranded in Russia, but cannot access it because of a legal problem. “We did not receive this [credit] because of a law in Russia, which stipulates that if there is a debt (our intergovernmental debt amounts to around $118 million) it must be partially repaid or restructured,” said Galustyan. “The nuclear fuel for this year costs $13 million, which with the debts totals $29 million.” Galustyan has until June, when the refuelling outage at Armenia 2 is scheduled to begin, to secure the fuel needed.
Armenia 2, which has undergone a 124-day outage, produced 1.84TWh of power in 2000, compared with 1.89TWh in 1999. Its capacity factor was 60.71% in 2000, 2.56% lower than in 1999. Three malfunctions were reported during the period – one rated level one on the INES scale and the other two rated zero.
The EU has offered Armenia r11 million to fund safety improvements at Armenia 2. Since 1996, the EU has donated r12 million for upgrade work and for a training simulator.