Centrus, Tenex extend cooperation to 2026

23 December 2015

Centrus Energy Corp has reached agreement with Russian uranium enrichment company Techsnabexport (Tenex) to modify the terms of the long-term supply contract they signed in 2011 and to extend their contractual relationship until 2026.

Centrus - created from the restructuring of US uranium enrichment company USEC last year - said the amendment extends the contract "under terms that reflect the reduction in global enrichment demand since 2011".

In identical statements issued by the two companies yesterday, Centrus said: "While reaffirming the original commitment to purchase 17 million SWU [separative work units] from 2016 to 2022, the revised agreement permits some quantities to be deferred for delivery until 2023 to 2026, along with additional quantities to be purchased in those years."

Daniel Poneman, Centrus president and CEO since March this year, said completing this contract revision had been a central priority since he arrived at Centrus. "The updated agreement reflects the changing fuel market and extends our supply arrangement for a decade, further strengthening the partnership between our two companies - a partnership that has played an indispensable role in US-Russia nuclear cooperation for more than two decades," Poneman said.

Tenex general director, Lyudmila Zalimskaya, said the new arrangement strengthened the two companies' "long-term relations".

On 23 March 2011, USEC and Tenex signed a multi-year contract for the 10-year supply of low-enriched uranium (LEU). Tenex started supplying the LEU in 2013 under the contract, signed in Washington, DC, by USEC senior vice president Philip Sewell and Tenex director general Alexey Grigoriev. The amount was increased up to 2015 when it reached about one-half the level currently supplied by Tenex to USEC under the Megatons to Megawatts program. The agreement included the mutual option to increase the quantities up to the same level as that program. Deliveries under the contract are expected to continue until 2022, USEC said at the time.

The Megatons to Megawatts program to downblend weapons-grade uranium was completed in December 2013. The arrangement started in 1993, when the US and Russian governments signed an agreement for the purchase over a 20-year period of 500 tonnes of Russian 'surplus' high-enriched uranium (HEU) from nuclear disarmament and military stockpiles. These were to be bought by the USA for use as fuel in civil nuclear reactors. Under the deal, the USA transferred to Russia a similar quantity of natural uranium to that used to downblend the HEU.

Researched and written
by World Nuclear News