Bushehr schedule: 18 months

3 October 2002

The main components of the VVER-1000 reactor under construction at Bushehr, Iran, are being installed, following transport of the parts to Iran from Russia.

According to Russia's deputy atomic energy minister, Andrei Malyshev, Russian engineers are planning to load fuel into the first Bushehr unit in December 2003. Malyshev said the Bushehr plant had been checked by the International Atomic Energy Agency, and no violations of international agreements had been revealed.

As for the possible construction of a second unit, he said no such project has been agreed so far but if an agreement was reached, the reactor would be similar to the first unit.

Meanwhile, energy minister Alexander Rumyantsev has announced that the Russian government has signed all agreements necessary for it to import spent fuel from Bushehr. His announcement followed a report from Greenpeace that claimed that Iran had refused to return the spent fuel to Russia.

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