Bulgaria, Russia agree further six months delay on Belene nuke
Bulgaria and Russia have agreed to delay by a further six months a decision whether to proceed with the Belene nuclear power project, Bulgarian Energy Holding (BEH) said on September 30.
The latest, 14th annex, which was signed between BEH and the plant's contractor, Russian company Atomstroyexport, envisions extending the deadline for reaching a deal on the project until end-March 2012.
Over the next six months, working groups from Russia and Bulgaria will continue work on the completion of the market review, as well as seek to arrange the financial aspects of the deal and consider proposals on the structure of the financing by the project's consultant HSBC, the country's state-run power grid operator NEK said.
Among the reasons for delaying the decision on the project's future was the forthcoming release of the Europe-wide stress tests results, scheduled for June 2012.
Bulgaria picked Atomstroyexport to build the country's second nuclear power plant in 2006. Since then, the parties have signed 14 additional agreements to the initial contract worth more than one billion euro. The addendums envision the installation of two nuclear reactors at Belene, which are currently being constructed in Russia, but each one further delayed the start of construction work on the Belene site.