22 Jul 2009 21:43

Tymoshenko speaks against politicizing nuclear fuel delivery contracts

KYIV. July 22 (Interfax) - Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko has spoken against inflating the issue of long-term contracts between Ukraine's Energoatom corporation and Russia's TVEL for the delivery of nuclear fuel.

"As for nuclear fuel I can say that Ukraine has signed an agreement for the delivery of nuclear fuel for 2009 and 2010. We don't have a single problem, a single question that would be related to the supplies of Ukraine with nuclear fuel," she said at a Wednesday briefing in Kyiv.

She added that questions of cooperation with U.S. Westinghouse and Holtec in the nuclear sector were discussed on Tuesday with U.S. Vice President Joe Biden.

"This is just the opportunity to use alternative [to Russian] nuclear fuel at Ukrainian NPPs," she said.

A protocol of the April session of the committee for economic cooperation of the Russian-Ukrainian intergovernmental commission implied the signing by July 15 of a package of agreements in the nuclear sector related to long-term fuel deliveries for Ukrainian NPPs and the construction of a fuel producing plant in Ukraine.

Currently TVEL is the sole supplier of fuel for Ukrainian NPPs.

Since 2005, fuel produced by Westinghouse is being tested in the third power unit of the South Ukrainian NPP. Westinghouse is planning to deliver 42 fuel units at the end of 2009, beginning of 2010, for loading into the third power unit of the NPP. If the tests prove successful, starting with 2010, Energoatom plans to buy fuel from Westinghouse on a scale sufficient for the annual resupply of three power units of its NPPs.

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