France’s EDF announced on 12 July that it had opened an office in Warsaw in order to prepare a comprehensive proposal for the Polish government concerning the construction of Poland's first NPP. Thierry Deschaux will be managing director of the office. Its main task is to support the process of preparing a comprehensive offer in the field of nuclear energy, adapted to the Polish market. The decision confirms EDF's long-term commitment to supporting Polish ambitions - the company emphasised.
"France offers a European solution based on third-generation EPR reactor technology, already recognised by several European nuclear safety authorities, and on 50 years of experience in the nuclear industry," said Philippe Crouzet, the high representative of the French government for cooperation with Poland.
EDF deputy CEO for new nuclear projects, Vakis Ramany, said that Poland was a key market for his company and EDF is committed to offering more than just proven EPR technology. "We are promoting a long-term strategic partnership based on three elements: integrating the Polish supply chain, building the human potential of the future operator, and exploring, with the help of the French government, various tools for financing and securing the Polish programme," Ramany said.
According to the Polish government's Energy Strategy, Poland plans to construct six nuclear power units. In 2033, Poland should launch the reactor generating some 1-1.6 GWe. Subsequent reactors should be constructed every two to three years until the target of six units is reached. The Polish government expects its partner in the nuclear programme to take a 49% share, to provide adequate financing and participate not only in the construction but also in the operation of the plants.
Poland earlier signed an intergovernmental agreement with the US under which American companies are to submit their offer next year. South Korea has also expressed interest. US-based Westinghouse Electric Company and South Korea’s Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power have also expressed interest. Westinghouse has already established an office in Warsaw and recently announced a service centre investment in Krakow. Earlier in July, the US Trade and Development Agency announced grant funding for Poland’s Polskie Elektrownie Jadrowe, the company charged with managing Poland’s first nuclear power project, for a front-end engineering and design study involving US-based Westinghouse Electric Company and Bechtel Corporation.