Vendors look to Polish localization

08 October 2012

Three companies keen to help Poland construct its first nuclear power plant have taken further steps to strengthen their local supply chain with the signature of two separate agreements with Polish entitites.

Areva and EDF have followed up a series of supplier days in various Polish cities with the signature of a tripartite memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Polish energy engineering company Energoprojekt. The agreement aims to combine the three companies' respective engineering and industrial skills to add value to the Polish nuclear program.

Both French companies have promised that a "significant part" of the works for a Polish nuclear plant - should they be selected to build it - would be open to Polish suppliers. EDF nuclear engineering division director Dominique Lagarde said that joining the skills and knowledge of "companies who know the local context" with experienced nuclear companies would be essential for the success of a Polish nuclear program. Meanwhile, Areva vice commercial chief officer Tarik Choho pointed to 25 Polish companies already involved in the company's EPR construction site at Olkiluoto 3 in Finland. "This constitutes a solid base on which to build to realize a significant part of the future reactor project work in Poland," Choho said.

Energoprojeckt managing director Andrzj Patrycy said he was confident that his company's experience would be of benefit to "our French partners during the construction of the first Polish nuclear power plant."

GE-Hitachi looks to workforce

On the same day that Areva and EDF signed their MoU with Energoprojekt, another would-be builder of Poland's first nuclear plant, GE-Hitachi, announced an MoU with the Warsaw University of Technology.

The company hailed the agreement, which focuses on the development of Poland's nuclear workforce and other innovation opportunities in anticipation of a Polish nuclear program, as a "prime example" of its philosophy of "leveraging local expertise and infrastructure."

The agreement is the latest in a series of preliminary agreements GE-Hitachi has signed pertaining to Polish projects. It too has an MoU to discuss the feasibility of partnering on future reactor projects with Energoprojekt, signed in July 2011.

Poland plans to have a nuclear power plant in operation by 2025, and utility Polska Grupa Energetyczna (PGE) has approved the construction of two nuclear power plants. No vendor has yet been selected, although non-exclusive agreements on the investigation of French EPR technology, GE-Hitachi's ABWR and ESBWR, and Westinghouse's AP1000 have been signed in recent years.

Researched and written
by World Nuclear News