Energoatom and Urenco discuss enriched uranium supply

20 December 2022

Ukrainian nuclear power operator Energoatom has held talks with Urenco about "increasing the supply of enriched uranium to Westinghouse for the production of nuclear fuel" for its plants in 2024-25.

The talks took place online (Image: Energoatom)

Energoatom said that its President Petro Kotin and Urenco CEO Boris Schucht held an online meeting on Monday to discuss the situation.

The company said they had also agreed on "long-term cooperation in the field of supplying enriched uranium to Energoatom from 2026". UK-headquartered Urenco operates plants in Germany, the Netherlands, the UK and the USA using its own centrifuge technology to enrich uranium for use as a nuclear fuel for civil power generation.

Energoatom and Urenco have an exisiting agreement from August 2019 and "the next stage of negotiations" between the companies took place in April this year "against the background of Ukraine's complete rejection of Russian nuclear fuel", Energoatom said.

Energoatom had been seeking to diversify its sources of nuclear fuel for its nuclear power plants in recent years, a process which has been accelerated since the war began in February, with the company saying it will switch all of its reactors away from Russian fuel and make a full shift to using Westinghouse fuel, supplied from the company’s fabrication site in Västerås in Sweden.

Asked about the meeting, a Urenco spokesperson told World Nuclear News: "The conflict in Ukraine has brought about an urgent global focus on energy independence and security of supply in our markets, and more countries and energy companies are turning to nuclear or seeking to diversify their existing supply as a result.

"We remain in contact with our customer in Ukraine and continue to offer our support, both for their current and future energy needs. We cannot make any further comment about ongoing discussions."

Researched and written by World Nuclear News