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Opinions & Interviews

25 Feb 2015

Potupchik: Construction of first, second units of Belarusian nuclear station on schedule

Potupchik: Construction of first, second units of Belarusian nuclear station on schedule

MINSK, 25 February (BelTA) – The construction of the first and second power-generating units of the Belarusian nuclear power plant proceeds on schedule. The statement was made by Belarusian Energy Minister Vladimir Potupchik on 25 February as he answered questions of members of the lower chamber of the Belarus parliament, BelTA has learned.

“The construction of the nuclear power plant goes on well. At present we stay on schedule and have no doubt that we will commission the power plant on time. Today about 3,000 people are employed at the construction site. Those are Belarusian and Russian construction workers,” said Vladimir Potupchik. In his words, more workers get employed all the time. Their number will be at an all-time high in 2016-2017. The necessary infrastructure is being prepared with this in mind.

The Belarusian Energy Minister reminded that the general contract specifies active participation of Belarusian companies in the construction of the nuclear power plant. At present Belarusian companies handle about 89% of the total volume of the construction and installation work. “You know skills of Belarusian construction workers very well. At present our construction projects are in order. It has been noted by absolutely every visitor, including IAEA representatives,” stressed the official.

During the session on 25 February the House of Representatives of the National Assembly of Belarus ratified the protocol on amending the Belarusian-Russian intergovernmental agreement on cooperation in building the nuclear power plant in Belarus of 15 March 2011. The document was signed in Moscow on 23 December 2014. The amendments are designed to take care of topical matters in bilateral cooperation. In particular, as they signed the general contract to build the Belarusian nuclear power plant on 18 July 2012, the sides set out to commission the first power-generating unit of the Belarusian nuclear power plant in 2018, with the second one scheduled for launch in 2020. The two dates are specified by the Belarus president’s decree No. 499 of 2 November 2013. The decree regulates the construction of the Belarusian nuclear power plant.

The amendments to the agreement will bring the norms of the document up to date with the Belarusian legislation. It will allow the sides to share information required for the development of design documents and the creation of physical safeguards without any risks to state security. The sides will be able to perform the work to build the physical safeguards using a designated Russian state export loan with quality and timeliness in mind.

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