Fuel rods made by BNFL have been tested in Finland on behalf of Hungary's Paks nuclear plant for three years. The British company has won the joint tender invited by Paks and the Finnish power plant Loviisa for the production of the rods. The measure was prompted by operational safety concerns and a presumably more advantageous purchase price, Gabor Vamos, the power plant company's deputy general manager said.
Paks previously bought its fuel from Russia. However, with the Soviet Union, it became unclear whether the Paks plant would be able to continue so easily in future. Russia will supply a certain number of heating elements at a fixed price until the end of 2002. Vamos believes BNFL could start producing rods for Paks from 2003.