Electricity generated by the Belarus NPP under construction at Ostrovets near the border with Lithuania will be exclusively for the domestic market, according to  deputy energy minister Vadim Zakrevsky.

Local press reports on 21 March quoted Zakrevsky as saying Belarus does not have sufficient fuel and energy resources and needed to develop its nuclear energy industry to reduce the cost of electricity generation and to diversify fuel sources. When the decision was made to build the nuclear power plant, electricity exports were not the main goal, Zakrevsky noted.

“Electricity generated by the Belarusian nuclear power station is intended for domestic consumption. It will be fully used inside the country. The facility is being built to bolster energy security and improve the overall competitive ability of our economy,” he said.

Unit 1 at the Belarus NPP is expected to begin commercial operation in 2019, a year later than originally announced, following an accident involving the reactor pressure vessel. The plant comprises  two 1109MWe VVER-1200 reactor units being built by Russian state nuclear corporation Rosatom. Construction of unit 1 began in November 2013 and  2 in April 2014.