Uzbekistan formally approves NPP construction

19 October 2018

Uzbekistan President Shavkat Mirziyoyev on 16 October signed a resolution approving an agreement between the governments of Uzbekistan and the Russian Federation on cooperation in the design and construction of a nuclear power plant in the republic.

The agreement was signed by Prime Ministers Dmitry Medvedev and Abdulla Aripov in September." The Foreign Ministry has been instructed to send a corresponding notification on the implementation by Uzbekistan of the internal state procedures necessary for the entry into force of the international treaty", the resolution said. The contract provides for the design, construction and commissioning of a two-unit nuclear station in Uzbekistan.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said he would sign a “solid package” of documents to launch the construction of the first NPP in Central Asia, which will be built in the Tudacul reservoir area, 25 kilometres northeast of Bukhara. The decision on the site was based on various criteria such as water availability, seismic zone and the proximity of infrastructure systems. The reservoir collects excess water from the Zeravshan River and is additionally fed by the waters of the Amudarya River through a complex system of canals. The site of the plant is located far from the mountains, 700 kilometres from the seismic centre of the Pamir-Hindu Kush zone, and there are the large industrial infrastructures of Bukhara and Navoi nearby. The NPP is expected to supply up to 20% of the Uzbekistan’s electricity needs and will save up to 4 billion cubic metres of natural gas, which could otherwise earn up to $600 million a year.

Earlier , Russian state nuclear corporation Rosatom said it  the first unit of the plant, a Generation 3+ VVER-1200 reactor, would begin commercial operation by 2028. Uzbekistan’s ambassador to Russia, Bakhrom Ashrafkhanov, said the project could cost around $13bn. The bulk of the investment would come from Russia, he said, without providing further details.   

Photo: Russia and Uzbekistan signed an intergovernmental agreement in September (Credit: Rosatom)

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