Kazakhstan will build nuclear power plant in at least 12 years

Kazakhstan will build nuclear power plant in at least 12 years, Kazakh energy ministry told Trend.

First of all, feasibility studies of the project should be developed and it will take about 2 years, according to the ministry. Then the construction work will require at least 10 years.

“According to the International Atomic Energy Agency’s assessment construction of nuclear power plant will take 10 – 12 years,” said the ministry, adding that the experience in the construction of power plants abroad will also be considered.

“Necessary work include choosing the site, design, construction works, production and installation of equipment and commissioning of the plant. Moreover the infrastructure should be developed, trainings for the staff organized the normative-technical framework created.”

Earlier it was planned that the construction of the first Kazakh nuclear power plant will start in 2018 and nuclear power generation was expected to begin in 2023-2024.

The ministry also said that two preliminary sites for future nuclear power plants had been chosen in Kazakhstan. These sites include the town of Kurchatov in East Kazakhstan region (on the former Semipalatinsk nuclear test site) and the area near Lake Balkhash in Almaty region.

“The Government will make final decision on the site for nuclear power plant basing on the results of feasibility studies which would be developed for the both regions,” the ministry said.

The decision on the type of reactor for future nuclear power plant has not been made yet.

“Currently Kazakhstan examines the data on design and operational characteristics of the reactors of different international companies in order to determine the reactor technologies which are the most appropriate for the country,” the ministry said.

Meanwhile Kazakh Energy Vice-Minister Bahytzhan Dzhaksaliyev said that Kazakhstan will build two power plants, Kazinform reported.

“We will develop a final decision on the construction of the two nuclear power plants with the help of international experts within 2-3 years, and work will continue,” Vice-Minister said at Kazakh- French business forum in Astana on Dec.5 .

Earlier Kazakh President Nursultan ordered the construction of the nuclear power plant. Kazakhstan has great uranium reserves – the main fuel for the plant.

The country remains the world’s biggest uranium producer since 2009 and has produced 22,500 metric tons of uranium in 2013. Currently the country exports all the produced uranium.

Construction of the first Kazakh nuclear power plant is planned to start in 2018. Nuclear power generation is expected to begin in 2023-2024.