Armenia is interested in the construction of a new nuclear power plant, which could replace the Armenian Nuclear Power Plant that is being upgraded and modernized.
According to Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan, "it is very important for Armenia to have nuclear power industry," and Yerevan hopes to extend the operating life of the existing nuclear power plant until 2040 and build a new nuclear power station before that time. "I hope Russia will help us in this matter, because, unfortunately, at the moment we have no sufficient financial resources to launch this process on our own. However, if our Russian counterparts help us, we will be glad to [begin the construction]. We are very much interested in this issue," he said, adding that Armenia has no plans to close down the existing nuclear power plant.
The Armenian Nuclear Power Plant commissioned in 1979 was stopped in 1989 after a devastating Spitak earthquake. In 1995, it was recommissioned with the participation of Russian specialists, after which the commercial operation of the plant’s second power unit resumed. The nuclear power plant provides about one-third of the electricity generated in Armenia, and it is a lot cheaper than electricity produced by thermal electric power plants and hydroelectric power stations.
On March 27, 2015, the Armenian government approved the program to extend the nuclear power plantís operating life signing two intergovernmental agreements with Russia on cooperation in extending the life cycle of the plantís second power unit. Under one of these agreements, Russia provided a $270 million export loan and a $30 million grant to Armenia for the purpose. Russian and Armenian experts confirmed at the end of last year that it was possible to extend the nuclear power plantís operating life.Source:†www.com
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