UK set to pull plug on nuclear reactor deal with Russian energy firm

by ClickGreen staff. Published Mon 24 Mar 2014 12:40, Last updated: 2014-03-24
Plans to allow Russian company to build a UK nuclear reactor are now being re-considered
Plans to allow Russian company to build a UK nuclear reactor are now being re-considered

UK Energy Ministers are reviewing a nuclear power agreement with a Russian state-backed energy company in the wake of the Ukraine crisis.

An agreement between the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) and Russian corporation Rosatom was signed last September that aimed to allow the firm access to the UK nuclear energy market.

The memorandum of understanding provided for a programme of co-operation "designed to be the most effective means of enabling Rosatom to prepare for entry into the United Kingdom civil nuclear market".

The plan was to give Rosatom access to the UK Government's watchdogs, the Office for Nuclear Regulation and the Environment Agency, so that it could understand British regulatory and licencing requirements.

However, as the diplomatic stand-off against Russia’s involvement in the Crimea region intensifies, Energy Minister Michael Fallon has confirmed the deal is now being reviewed.

In an update to Parliament, Mr Fallon said the initial agreement is “now under consideration in the light of recent developments”.

Rosatom has already formed a partnership with British engineering company, Rolls Royce, which the memorandum explained: "The participants hope that this relationship will lead to joint projects in the United Kingdom and overseas.”

A DECC spokesperson said today: “The Government and Rosatom signed a Memorandum of Understanding on Establishing a Programme of Commercial Cooperation in Civil Nuclear Energy in September last year.

“No decisions have been made on how this work will be taken forward, which is under consideration in the light of recent developments in Ukraine.”




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