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Launch of Belarusian nuclear power plant in final phase

The launch of the Belarusian nuclear power plant is in the final phase yet there are a number of issues worth discussing. Prime Minister of Belarus Sergei Rumas made the statement as he met with Director General of the Russian state nuclear industry corporation Rosatom Aleksei Likhachev, BelTA has learned.

The head of government said he would like today’s meeting to at least clarify debatable issues and sketch out ways to address them if fixing the problems right now is not feasible.

Sergei Rumas said: “We should clearly define what interferes with our plans for key stages. I think we have to streamline work on both sides in a way to prevent any disruptions.”

In turn, Aleksei Likhachev informed Sergei Rumas about yesterday’s negotiations at the site of the Belarusian nuclear power plant. He said: “The first unit has high technical readiness. We estimate it at 97% of the design’s implementation. Today we can schedule even for specific days when all the actions and steps will be taken, including the physical launch, connection to the power grid, and when the nuclear power plant reaches 100% output capacity using the Leningrad and Novovoronezh nuclear power plants for reference. We clearly understand every detail of what is going to happen within the next few months, weeks, days, and even hours.”

According to the Rosatom head, the second unit should not be left unattended while work on the first one is in full swing. “Our focus and concentration of resources on the first unit must in no way cast doubts on the pace and quality of work on the second unit of the Belarusian nuclear power plant,” he believes.

Aleksei Likhachev stressed that the Russian side supports safety as the utmost priority. “Safety above all. There can be no compromises about it,” he added.

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 late 2019, with the second one to go online in 2020. ASE Company is the general designer and general contractor in the project to build the Belarusian nuclear power plant. It also represents Rosatom’s engineering division.