France interested in building Romania’s future nuclear power plant

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French Secretary of State for European Affairs Pierre Lellouche on Friday reaffirmed his country’s readiness to participate in the construction of Romania’s second nuclear power plant.

“Romania, as well as Poland, Slovakia, Italy, the United Kingdom and, of course, France, has nuclear programs and specific projects underway, such as the construction of its second nuclear power plant (…) I believe that the new generation of nuclear plants features the world’s best security system. Therefore, I hope that the plant here will be using European technology, French one in particular,’ produced by the Romanian industry said Lellouche.

He pointed out that energy security is a priority concern of the European Union, which needs to reduce its energy dependence and that Romania and France have agreements in force sealed at the level of the French Atomic Energy Commission.
“Limiting reliance means building nuclear power plants and this means staying consistent with the commitments undertaken in Copenhagen, to fight climate change,’ said Pierre Lellouche.

On the occasion of the visit to Paris of Romanian President Traian Basescu back in May 2009, French President Nicolas Sarkozy had expressed France’s readiness to help “with technical expertise” and “companies” the implementation of the project consisting of the construction of the second nuclear power plant in Romania. According to the French Presidency, Traian Basescu confirmed on that occasion that Romania would opt for a ‘European technology’ for its future nuclear plant that should be commissioned at the horizon of 2020.

The Bucharest authorities announced that the new facility would be built in the center of the country by attracting foreign partners. So far, the Cernavoda Nuclear Power Plant is the only of this type in Romania. The Romania-Canada feasibility study for the use of the CANDU technology in Romania was completed in 1976.
The Cernavoda power plant was designed to operate five reactors with CANDU Canadian technology, with an installed capacity of about 700 MW each. Unit 1 of SC Nuclearelectrica in Cernavoda was commercially commissioned in 1996 and Unit 2 went into operation in 2007. Together the two units cover about 18 percent of the country’s electricity consumption.

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