The Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation gathered senior ENEC, UAE government and Korean officials to celebrate the start of pouring nuclear concrete of Barakah unit 2.

In line with the approved Construction License from the Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulation (FANR), ENEC poured the first safety concrete for Unit 2, marking the official start of construction of the UAE’s second nuclear energy plant. Construction of the Unit 2 plant will take five years, with the plant scheduled to enter commercial operation in 2018, pending further regulatory approvals.

ENEC will apply for an Operating License for Units 1 and 2 in 2015 and recently submitted the Construction License Application for Units 3 & 4 to FANR in March 2013.

"We are drawing on the skills and expertise of a world-class nuclear corporation through our Prime Contractor KEPCO," said H.E. Mohamed Al Hammadi, Chief Executive Officer of ENEC.

"One of the key factors of the bidding process to support the UAE’s nuclear energy program, along with meeting the highest standards of safety and quality, was the company’s ability to provide the resources and capabilities to deliver these key early development stages of the project. KEPCO is meeting our goal of delivering the gold standard of peaceful nuclear energy development and we are very proud of the progress we are making with our partners."

ENEC is constructing a total of four nuclear energy reactors in Barakah. In July 2012, ENEC received its Construction License from the Federal Authority of Nuclear Regulation (FANR) and a No Objection Certificate from the Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi for the construction of the first two plants.

The first plant is expected to commence operations in 2017, pending further regulatory approvals.