Russian nuclear regulator Rostechnadzor on 31 May approved the issuing of a construction licence for Kursk NPP Phase Two (Kursk II), the construction control panel for Kursk II announced on 2 June. Work to replace soil in the foundation pit will start once the construction permit has been accepted by state nuclear corporation Rosatom. Since the beginning of this year, capital investment totalling RUB694.3bn ($10.4m) has been spent at the site. In May, construction-related facilities, water treatment and intake structures were built, the area for the construction support base was prepared. Kursk II employs 13 contractors at 24 facilities with a total staff of 465 people. This is to be increased to 790 people, according to nuclear utility Rosenergoatom. Kursk II will initially have two units with new VVER-TOI reactors. Commissioning of unit 1 is scheduled for 2021-2022. The Kursk site in western Russia currently hosts four operating 1,000MWe RBMK reactors, which are due to close once the Kursk II units are operating.