The Hungarian government will have to fulfil two conditions before the European Commission (EC) can give the go-ahead to the Paks nuclear power plant (NPP) expansion project, according to reports in the Hungarian media.
The project involves the construction of two new units with capacity of 1,200MW as part of the expansion of the existing Paks plant — which comprises four 500MWe units.
The first condition, according to the online business daily Portfolio, is for all issues related to the supervision of the power plant to be ‘clearly separated’ from existing policymaking in the energy sector and the overall system of supervision for powers stations in Hungary.
The second condition states that the electricity produced should be sold on a power exchange along market principles, instead of being directly sold to the country’s national grid.
This follows the launch of an infringement procedure against Hungary by the EC in November 2015, concerning the project and the award of the construction contract to Russia, and doubts about the country’s financing plans in January 2016.
The €12.5bn project will be financed by a €10bn loan from Russia — to be repaid over 21 years.
Construction work is expected to commence in 2018 and 2019, with commissioning expected in 2025 and 2026.
* This is a version of an article originally published in Nuclear Engineering International
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