Russia’s Cabinet of Ministers has approved a draft agreement on cooperation in construction of nuclear power plants in Uzbekistan, the Cabinet website announced on 7 September. The draft agreement provides for cooperation in designing, construction in the territory of Uzbekistan, commissioning and operation of a two-unit plant designed by Russia, with installed capacity for each power unit of up to 1200MWe.

In May, Uzbekistan proposed that Russia should build a nuclear plant in the Navoi region, according to Director General of Russian state nuclear corporation Rosatom Alexei Likhachev.

Earlier, a deal was signed by Likhachev and the Uzbek Deputy Prime Minister Nodir Otazhonov establishing the legal basis for bilateral cooperation between Russia and Uzbekistan on the peaceful use of atomic energy. In April, Sputnik reported that the Russian Export Centre (REC) was discussing with the government of Uzbekistan the possibility of allocating funds for financing the construction of a nuclear plant, citing the head of the REC office in Uzbekistan, Dmitry Prokhorenko.  Russia reportedly is ready to offer Uzbekistan several options for financing the project, including a state loan, borrowing money from the market, investing its own funds, or a Build-Own-Operate arrangement.

At the end of 2017, an agreement was signed between the governments of Uzbekistan and Russia on cooperation in the use of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes. Areas of bilateral cooperation included the training of Uzbek personnel, the construction of nuclear power plants and research reactors, the exploration and development of uranium deposits, the re-use of uranium tailings, the production of radioisotopes and their use in industry, medicine and agriculture, and other scientific and fundamental research.