Ukrainian nuclear utility Energoatom and Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power (KHNP) on 31 August agreed to cooperate in completing construction of the Khmelnitsky NPP. “The main areas of the cooperation will focus on completing construction of units 3 and 4 at the Khmelnitsky NPP and implementing the ‘Energy Bridge Ukraine-European Union’ project, according to a Energoatom’s statement. A steering committee will be set up to “coordinate issues of cooperation in the framework of this memorandum, as well as develop corresponding commercial contracts (or a number of deals) on the basis of this cooperation”.
Construction of units 3 and 4 (both 1,000MWe VVER reactors) begun in 1985 and 1986, but was at halted in 1990, when they were 75% and 28% complete.
In June 2010, Russia and Ukraine signed an intergovernmental agreement to resume work and the Ukrainian parliament ratified that agreement. Russia was to provide financing for the design, construction and commissioning of the two reactors, including payments for services and goods supplied by Russia. Any components supplied by Ukraine were to be financed from the Ukrainian budget. However, following the change of government in Ukraine in 2014, Ukraine cancelled the agreement.
Ukraine then reportedly considered the possibility of cooperation with China on the project. In July 2015, the Ukrainian government approved a pilot project, named the "energy bridge", to transfer electricity from unit 2 of the Khmelnitsky plant to the European Union. Energoatom said the project would not only fund the addition of two reactors, but will also open up new prospects for Ukraine to export power to European markets.
In March this year, Energoatom, Ukrenergo (state-run power distribution company) and Polenergia (a privately-owned Polish investment company) signed an MOU on the project, which also aimed to attract funds for the completion of the third and fourth reactors of the Khmelnitsky plant. The export of energy will be made possible by disconnecting Khmelnitsky 2 from the national grid.