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Jordan in negotiations with potential partners in nuclear project

By Mohammad Ghazal - May 23,2016 - Last updated at May 23,2016

AMMAN — Jordan is in talks with several international companies to be partners in the country’s first nuclear plant by providing necessary turbines and systems for the plant, according to Khaled Toukan, the chairman of the Jordan Atomic Energy Commission (JAEC).

Jordan is currently in discussions with Shanghai Electric, China National Nuclear Corporation, Alstom and other Japanese and Czech companies to provide the plant with necessary electric systems and turbines for the two reactors that will be built under the programme, Toukan said in a recent interview with The Jordan Times.

“We are moving ahead at the same time with studies related to the project that entails building two reactors with 1,000 megawatts capacity each,” Toukan said.

Toukan added that the JAEC is also negotiating with several regional investors and funds on another project to build a factory for the production of mine.

The facility, which will cost around $300 million, will produce 400 metric tonnes of uranium per year by 2021, which will be enough to power the two reactors.

Production will later increase to 15,000 tonnes per year, said Toukan, adding that uranium is expected to be exported to several countries in the region that have plans for nuclear reactors including the UAE, Egypt, Turkey and Saudi Arabia.

According to Toukan, the first nuclear reactor is expected to be ready by 2023, while the second will go online by 2025.

Toukan added that by 2030, Jordan will need around 6,800 megawatts of electricity capacity, stressing that the nuclear plant is crucial for ensuring a sustainable, low-cost supply of power.

The two reactors, he said, will require around 50 million cubic metre of water per year for cooling, which will come from As-Samra Wastewater Treatment Plant that has a production capacity of 106 million cubic metre at present and will witness a further increase in the near future.

Jordan has recently reached a deal with Rosatom State Nuclear Energy Corporation under which Russia will provide enriched nuclear fuel for the reactors for the first 10 years after which Jordan has the option of buying nuclear fuel from Russia or any other market. 

 

In March last year, Jordan signed an inter-governmental agreement with Russia to build and operate the nuclear power plant. Russia’s Rosatom will own 49 per cent of the project.

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