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28 Mar 2019

Lithuanian proposal to repurpose Belarusian nuclear power plant ‘ill-advised’

Lithuanian proposal to repurpose Belarusian nuclear power plant ‘ill-advised’

OSTROVETS DISTRICT, 28 March (BelTA) – Lithuania’s proposal to remodel the Belarusian nuclear power plant so that the facility could burn natural gas to generate electricity is ill-advised from the economic and technical points of view. The statement was made by Belarusian Deputy Energy Minister Mikhail Mikhadyuk at the Belarusian nuclear power plant construction site on 28 March, BelTA has learned.

Mikhail Mikhadyuk said: “In my personal opinion, the proposal has been made more out of political reasons. It is economically and technically ill-advised. From the technical point of view it cannot be implemented because we would have to redo virtually everything, destroy what has been done, and reject the equipment that has been delivered.” As for economy, refitting the Belarusian nuclear power plant taking into account the billions of U.S. dollars that have already been spent will never be recouped, the official stated.

Mikhail Mikhadyuk responded to those, who compare the Belarusian nuclear power plant and Minsk cogeneration plant No.5, which was initially envisaged as a nuclear power plant but was converted into a cogeneration plant later on. In his opinion, the comparison is incorrect because the facility in Minsk was repurposed early on in the construction process.

“I think the Lithuanian side would never dare implement such a proposal in its own country,” Mikhail Mikhadyuk concluded.

The Belarusian nuclear power plant is being built near Ostrovets, Grodno Oblast using a Russian design featuring two VVER-1200 reactors with the total output capacity of 2,400MW. The first power-generating unit is scheduled for commissioning in 2019, with the second one to go online in 2020.

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