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Home News Power Sector News Areva likely to sign pact for Jaitapur reactors by mid-2011

Areva likely to sign pact for Jaitapur reactors by mid-2011

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ArevaFrench energy group Areva expects to sign the commercial agreement with state-run Nuclear Power Corporation of India (NPCIL) for supply of nuclear reactors by the middle of 2011 and is ready to answer any questions that Indian authorities may have over safety, its Chief Operating Officer has said.

Luc Oursel said the company is taking into consideration lessons from Fukushima but no order has been cancelled or work stopped at any site post the disaster in Japan.

The French company signed an agreement for the construction of two nuclear reactors and supply of fuel for 25 years during the visit of President Nicholas Sarkozy to India last year. There are six nuclear reactors which will be set up by NPCIL at Jaitapur in Maharashtra.

But protests have erupted in Jaitapur over the proposed nuclear power plant and one person was killed in police firing on Monday. The protests by villagers who are opposed to the plant have raised doubts about the future of the 9,600 megawatt project.

"We are expecting to sign the commercial agreement with NPCIL by the middle of 2011. That is the target. We stick to the highest safety standards," Oursel, who is also the member of the executive board of Areva told visiting Indian journalists, "Areva is ready to answer any question that India through NPCIL would like to ask."

The total cost of the deal amounts to 7 billion (about 42,000 crores) and NPCIL is in the process of tying up the finances for the project. The total cost includes the two reactors and fuel supply for 25 years. The French company has assured supply of uranium for lifetime of the reactors which is 60 years.

The French government is analyzing the information from Japan and is undertaking taking stringent tests to maintain the safety of the nuclear facilities. Over 78% of electricity in France is generated from its 58 nuclear reactors.

The European Pressurised Reactor (EPR) was designed after feedback from more than 1,000 nuclear power plant designs. It can be maintained without shutting down the plant and can withstand any unexpected external hazard such as an air crash. The impact would be limited to the industrial site and would have no effect on the population near the plant. Areva is currently deploying four EPR reactors, one in France and Finland and two in China. The French reactor maker is also helping Japanese authorities to clean radioactive water.

Source- Times of India


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