Žiga: Completion of Mochovce plant to cost more than €4.6 bn

The completion of construction work on the third and fourth reactor blocks at Mochovce nuclear power plant (NPP) might be overpriced, Economy Minister Peter Žiga admitted.

Economy Minister Peter ŽigaEconomy Minister Peter Žiga (Source: TASR)

Following the government session on May 25, Žiga confirmed that Mochovce’s operator, Slovenské elektrárne (SE), indicated the need to increase the budget from the current €4.6 billion at a meeting on May 24. According to him, the two sides agreed to set up an expert team.

“I see significant progress in communications, in the setting of processes regarding the construction,” minister said, as quoted by the TASR newswire. “Despite this, the board of experts, people who are experienced in investment activities like this, will have to meet and assess whether a potential increase is or isn’t OK, whether it is grounded, whether it has or doesn’t have an argumentation basis,” he said.

Žiga also said that launching the new reactors is a process that will take several months, and SE will present all the details at a press conference. “It will inform the public about its idea of launching the third and fourth blocks and about the deadlines within which it intends to do so,” the minister announced. “At the moment, I’m working with the schedule from 2014. The launch itself isn’t a matter of a few days, it’s a matter of several months, as you have to pump in fuel, carry out cold tests, warm tests, pressure tests,” Žiga said. According to earlier plans, Mochovce’s third block should have been put into operation by the end of this year.

The state currently controls 34 percent of SE. The remaining stake is held by Italian group Enel, which has already agreed to sell its shares to Czech Energetický a prúmyslový holding (EPH). Referring to a high-ranking source close to the construction project, Hospodárske Noviny daily reported in early May that the completion of the reactors could eventually cost €5.1 billion due to added safety measures.

 

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