Kozloduy review will be accepted

3 August 2003

Georgi Parvanov, president of Bulgaria, has said that the country would accept the results of this year's planned European Commission (EC) peer review of Kozloduy 3 and 4, if it is carried out on "professional grounds".

If the review shows the units could continue operating safely after 2006, Parvanov wants the EC to drop their closure as a condition of Bulgaria's accession to the European Union (EU). However, if the peer review eventually concluded that the units should be closed, then Bulgaria would "decommission the units by the end of 2006 and deal with the losses for the country." Bulgaria had asked for the EC peer review in an attempt to confirm the safety standards of the units.

A separate peer review of Kozloduy 3 and 4, by the World Association of Nuclear Operators (WANO), was concluded in June. Kozloduy plant director Iordan Kostadinov said that he was "positive" about the results, which will be presented in September, although they will not be made public. He remarked that the recommendations, good practices and strengths identified by the WANO team clearly show that Kozloduy is operated at a comparable level with other plants worldwide. Team leader Willie Waddell, director of Scotland's Torness plant, concluded that Kozloduy has made impressive improvements over the past ten years to the plant, the processes and the work practices. The WANO peer review team comprised 17 professionals from 11 countries.

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