Romania signals intent with China

26 November 2013

Romanian national nuclear company Nuclearelectrica has signed a letter of intent towards the development of two units at its Cernavoda nuclear power plant with China General Nuclear (CGN).


 Letter of intent (CGN)-460
CGN's He Yu and Nuclearelectrica president Daniela Lulache sign the letter of intent watched by the countries' premiers (Image: CGN)

The letter was signed during a visit to Bucharest by Chinese premier Li Keqiang. Keqiang's visit to Romania also saw the two countries sign numerous bilaterals, including a memorandum of understanding on the peaceful uses of nuclear energy. Neither CGN or Nuclearelectrica have yet published further details of their letter of intent or of CGN's specific involvement in the project.

Cernavoda is home to two operating Candu 6 pressurized heavy water reactors supplied by Atomic Energy of Canada Ltd and built by a Canadian-Italian consortium of AECL and Ansaldo. Unit 1 started up in 1996, but work was suspended on a further four units in 1991. Unit 2 was subsequently completed and has been in operation since 2007.

Efforts to resume work on Cernavoda 3 began in 2002, and a new project company, EnergoNuclear, was established in 2009 to oversee the completion of units 3 and 4. Initial partners GDF Suez, CEZ, RWE Power and Iberdrola subsequently withdrew, and the company is currently 84.65% owned by Nuclearelectrica. The Romanian state has since then been looking for new investors in the project to enable Nuclearelectrica to reduce its share.

According to CGN, the agreement with Nuclearlectrica signals a new step in its aims to "go global", following a letter of intent signed with EDF in October that would see it take a share the planned Hinkley Point C nuclear plant in the UK.

Researched and written
by World Nuclear News