The UAE’s Barakah One Company (BOC), a subsidiary of the Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (Enec), on 25 September signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Korea Electric Power Corporation (Kepco) expanding on a previously signed Charter for Joint Business Cooperation.

BOC plans to explore potential opportunities for collaboration to develop the ‘Barakah Model’, which aims to seek opportunities in new nuclear energy markets. Areas for collaboration could include investment and financing, licensing and safeguards, operations and maintenance, training and exchange of scientific and technical expertise. It could also include nuclear fuel cycle management, localisation and development of nuclear energy infrastructure.

CEO of Barakah One Nasser Al Nasseri said, “We will collaborate to identify potential prospects to support the establishment of nuclear energy projects in other countries that will benefit from the unique knowledge and skills developed at Barakah through the development of the UAE Peaceful Nuclear Energy Programme."

Earlier, during the International Atomic Energy Agency's 63rd General Conference in Vienna. Enec signed an MOU with French radioactive waste management agency Andra to explore possible collaboration in radioactive waste management. Enec said the agreement was part of its proactive approach to developing a long-term strategy for radioactive waste management. Enec CEO Mohamed Al Hammadi noted: "We have put in place a proactive approach to planning for the future requirements of the UAE nuclear energy industry alongside our UAE stakeholders, and in line with our international commitments. By working closely with Andra, we will be sharing best practices and insights for the future."

Four Korean-designed APR-1400 units are being built for Enec at Barakah, in  Abu Dhabi, by a consortium led by Kepco. Construction began on the first unit in July 2012, unit 2 in May 2013, unit 3 in September 2014 and unit 4 in September 2015. Construction of Barakah 1 was completed in 2018, and the unit is now undergoing commissioning and testing before receipt of an operating licence, which is needed before fuel loading can begin. The overall construction of the four Barakah units is now over 93% complete.

Photo: Andra and ENEC signed a memorandum of understanding to collaborate in radioactive waste management (Credit: Andra)