Russia’s Atomic Energy Ministry (MINATOM) and ZAO Atomstroiexport have expressed interest in completing construction of the first unit at Cuba’s half-built Juragua nuclear power plant. The overall cost of construction and assembly work is estimated at more than $600 million. The project has been mothballed for financial reasons since 1992.
“It seems that this project’s time has finally come,” a Russian official told NucNet. “As yet there are no details available on the financing. Nevertheless, the parties will consider the possibilities for attracting private investments, including some from Russia.” Experts estimate that, once in operation, the nuclear plant could reduce Cuba’s dependence on imported fossil fuels by nearly 25%. Under a 1976 Soviet-Cuban accord, work on the two Russian-designed VVER-440 reactor units started in 1983. However, the work stopped due to lack of finance following the collapse of the Soviet Union.