Russia to begin building two more nuclear units in Iran

20 February 2016

The director general of Russian state nuclear corporation Rosatom, Sergey Kiriyenko, announced on 19 February that Rosatom will start building two more nuclear units in Bushehr province in Southern Iran in the coming weeks. "We have set the date for construction of two new nuclear plants in Bushehr with our Iranian partners," he said. He noted that Russia and Iran had signed an agreement to build three nuclear plants in Bushehr province, one of which is now in operation. "We have also signed an agreement for construction of eight nuclear plants for Iran," Kiriyenko added.

In March 2014, Rosatom and the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) agreed to build at least two more nuclear plants in Bushehr and the following November signed a deal to that effect. In December 2015, AEOI Deputy Chief and spokesman Behrouz Kamalvandi announced that Iran has started building two new units. "We have entered the executive phase of the construction of these two nuclear plants based on the contract signed between Tehran and Moscow," Kamalvandi said. Russia is expected to construct the reactors at Bushehr while Iran will build the supporting facilities. According to Iran's 20-year plan, nuclear plants are to produce 20,000MWe of nuclear-generated power by 2025.

Meanwhile, Rosatom expects overseas NPP projects to account for half of its revenue by 2017, according to deputy director general Kirill Komarov. He told a nuclear defence conference in Moscow on 18 February and proceeds from foreign projects increased by nearly 20% last year. Rosatom's export revenue in 2014 totalled $5.2bn , increasing to $6.4bn last year. Total proceeds in 2014, according to the annual report, were RUB618.3bn ($8.2bn).

The nuclear industry is also expected to "build-up to 30% the proceeds from new businesses and production in the coming years", Komarov noted. He said in 2015 Rosatom's proceeds from new products were about 14%. Rosatom's executives believe "the large reserves to perform this task" are available within the nuclear weapons complex enterprises.

Last year, the consolidated proceeds of the Group of Companies ASE increased up to RUB166.5bn ($2.2bn) from RUB143bn in 2014. The ten-year portfolio of orders for nuclear build in Russia and abroad at the end of 2015 stood at $70.66bn against $59.5bn the preceding year. The information was given during discussion with stakeholders on preparing the 2015 annual report for the ASE Group, which includes three engineering companies: NIAEP (management company), Atomstroyexport (ASE) and Atomenergoproekt. In December 2015 the group also incorporated Atomproekt. The merger of the companies will be completed during 2016 which means Atomproekt's indicators will not be included in the 2015 report.

The presentation of the main results of activities noted that "the key drivers of the 2015 proceeds" were the construction projects of Tianwan 3 and 4 in China, Novovoronezh II/1 and 2 and the Ruppur NPP in Bangladesh. The group plans for further growth of proceeds to RUB247.5bn in 2018, while the order portfolio is expected to increase to $92.7bn in 2016.



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