Recent maintenance work at Armenia’s Medzamor power station has produced a “marked improvement” in safety, according to the Atomic Energy Security Council. Chairman Adolf Bierkhofer said Medzamor could now safely continue to operate beyond the 2004 deadline for its closure agreed in 1998 between Armenia and the EU.
Medzamor produced 34% of Armenia’s total electricity last year. President Kocharian said that the plant will only be closed by that date if Armenia finds an alternative source of energy.
However, the more immediate future of the plant is uncertain due to its accumulated debt of $16 million to Russia. Unless Armenia can honour the debt, the Russian government says that it will not supply the power station with its regular amount of fuel.