5 May 2022 12:53

Heads of Hungary's Foreign Ministry, Rosatom discuss Paks-2 NPP investment timeframe

MOSCOW. May 5 (Interfax) - Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto held talks with Rosatom CEO Alexei Likhachev on the future terms of investment in the Paks-2 nuclear power plant (NPP) project, the Hungarian official wrote on his Facebook page (the Meta Platforms Inc. information resource is recognized in Russia as an extremist organization and is banned).

"Today we are discussing future investment deadlines in Istanbul with Rosatom CEO Alexei Likhachev to be ready to build the two units as soon as possible," Szijjarto said in the post.

The EU has repeatedly stated that nuclear power is exempt from sanctions, the minister said.

Earlier in April, Janos Suli, a Hungarian minister without a portfolio in charge of the project, said that international equipment suppliers had assured Hungary that they would continue working with the nuclear power plant project.

Paks-2 has received construction licenses for more than half of construction and installation works. New documents will be issued soon, allowing the project to proceed to the second stage, Suli said.

Hungary expects to receive a license to build the Paks II nuclear power plant as soon as possible, Prime Minister Viktor Orban said in early February.

"As far as the construction of the nuclear power plant is concerned, we hope to receive the last license soon, which means that automatically the process will move into the second phase, construction," Orban said.

At the moment, Hungary's only Soviet-designed nuclear power plant, Paks, operates four units with VVER-440-type reactors with a total capacity of about 2 GW.

The Hungarian parliament approved the construction of two new units of this NPP in 2009, but the construction schedule was affected by the protracted proceedings of the European Commission.

The project was reported to cost about 12.5 billion euros, and Russia's Rosatom state corporation signed contracts to complete the NPP in December 2014. In March of the same year, Russia and Hungary signed an agreement on a long-term loan of up to 10 billion euros.