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Bangladesh, Russia deal sign on return of spent nuclear fuel

Bangladesh on Wednesday signed an inter-government agreement with Moscow in the Russian capital on return of hazardous nuclear waste or spent nuclear fuel to be discharged from Rooppur Nuclear power Plant being constructed with their assistance.

Science and Technology Minister Yeafesh Osman from Bangladesh side and Russia’s state nuclear authority Rosatom’s Director General Alexey Likhachev signed the deal, Science and Technology Ministry information officer Md Kamrul Islam Bhuiyan told energynewsbd.com.

The Science and technology ministry, meanwhile, issued a statement in Dhaka saying Bangladesh attached high importance on returning nuclear waste or spent nuclear fuel to Russia from the very beginning of the process.

“This matter was also mentioned in the Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA) signed between Bangladesh and Russia in 2011,” it said referring to the background of the deal.

Science and Technology Secretary M Anwar Hossain, Bangladesh Ambassador in Moscow Dr. Saiful Hoque and Rooppur plant`s Project Director Dr. Mohammad Shawkat Akbar were present among others during the signing ceremony at the Rosatom headquarters.

Russia earlier agreed to sign the agreement to return RNPP`s spent fuel while the Bangladesh cabinet on June 5, 2017 approved a draft of the treaty titled agreement between the Russian Federation and Bangladesh on Cooperation concerning return of spent nuclear fuel from Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant to the Russian Federation.

The agreement stipulates provisions for reprocessing of the spent Russian nuclear fuel from the Rooppur NPP at subsidiary enterprises of Rosatom. Implementation of the agreement will define the procedure for treatment of the spent nuclear fuel of Rooppur NPP project, said a press release from Rosatom on Wednesday.

“Rooppur NPP will be equipped with two Russian VVER reactors, each with a minimum capacity of 1,200 MW. The VVER-1200 offered by Rosatom is a modern generation 3+ project which meets all post-Fukushima safety standards and international rules,” said Alexey Likhachev.

“The agreement constitutes a major milestone of the Rooppur NPP construction project which has become a symbol of a new stage in development of bilateral cooperation of our countries even before the start of the construction.” he added.

Both the sides have prepared an intergovernmental agreement on the treatment of the spent nuclear fuel of the Rooppur NPP.

In accordance with the established procedure, the document was approved by the government of the Russian Federation and the government of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh. It is planned to prepare and sign commercial contracts as part of the further development of the intergovernmental agreement.

The Rooppur NPP is the largest joint project based on Russian technologies that will allow Bangladesh to enter into the international community of countries, who use nuclear energy for peaceful purposes. Implementation of the project is given the highest national priority in Bangladesh.

The construction of the Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant (NPP) is implemented under an intergovernmental agreement signed between Russia and Bangladesh on November 2, 2011.

On December 25, 2015 ASE group of companies (ROSATOM’s subsidiary) signed a contract to construct Rooppur NPP consisting of two VVER power units, each with a capacity of 1,200 MW.

The NPP construction site is located 160 km from Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh, on the east bank of the Padma river.

The first of two units is expected to go into operation in 2023, the second– in 2024. The design of the innovative Generation 3+ power unit which will be installed on Rooppur NPP includes the most powerful type of VVER-1200 reactor, as well as a high-speed turbine specially designed for new-generation NPPs.

It provides the highest level of operational safety and fully meets all post-Fukushima requirements strictly set by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

 

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