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Ukraine, Westinghouse to build nuclear fuel plant in Ukraine - Energy Minister

Ukraine, Westinghouse to build nuclear fuel plant in Ukraine - Energy MinisterUkraine has agreed an increase in supplies of nuclear fuel with Westinghouse and building a nuclear fuel plant in Ukraine in the future to avoid dependence on Russia, Ukrainian Energy and Coal Industry Minister Ihor Nasalyk has said.

"We agreed to diversify supplies for almost half of nuclear reactors and to build a nuclear fuel plant on the territory of Ukraine," he said at a press conference in Kyiv on Thursday.

The minister said that the agreements were reached during his recent trip to the United States.

Nasalyk recalled that at present Russia supplies almost 95% of nuclear fuel to Ukrainian nuclear power plants (NPPs).

As reported, in order to diversify sources of nuclear fuel supply for the country's NPPs, Energoatom jointly with Westinghouse in 2000 launched the project for the qualification of this company's fuel. In March 2008 Energoatom and Westinghouse Electric Sweden AB (Sweden) signed a commercial contract to ship fresh fuel to three or six reactors of Ukrainian NPPs in 2011-2015. In April 2014, the sides prolonged the contract until 2020.

At present, the Yuzhnoukrainsk NPP's reactor three and Zaporizhia NPP's reactor five are the only reactors that run on Westinghouse fuel. A plan to broaden the use of upgraded Westinghouse nuclear fuel assemblies (WR fuel assemblies) involves their use at reactor two of Yuzhnoukrainsk NPP in December 2016.

Energoatom operates all four active NPPs in Ukraine. It runs 15 power units equipped with pressurised water reactors with a total installed capacity of 13.835 gigawatts.
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