YEREVAN, August 8 / ARKA /. A major repair of the Armenian nuclear power plant estimated to cost around $300 million is scheduled to start in 2017 spring in order to extend its service life until 2026, Energy and Natural Resources Minister Yervand Zakharyan told reporters today. He said the work is scheduled to take six months.
Earlier this year the Armenian government reconfirmed its 2012 decision to extend the service life of the nuclear power plant in Metsamor by another ten years ‘because of the delay in the construction of a new nuclear facility.”
On July 4 Zakharyan said that Armenia and Russia would soon sign an agreement whereby Russia would provide Armenia with a $300 million loan to that end.
On May 30 Armenia’s premier Hovik Abrahamyan told reporters he had agreed with his Russian counterpart Dmitry Medvedev about a $300 million loan for repair of the Metsamor NPP, located some 30 kilometers west of Yerevan.
The plant was built in the 1970s but was closed following a devastating earthquake in 1988. One of its two VVER 440-V230 light-water reactors was reactivated in 1995.
Armenian authorities want to replace the aging Metsamor facility by a new plant that is supposed to operate at twice the capacity of the Soviet-constructed facility, generating currently some 40 percent of Armenia's electricity.
But the government has yet to attract funding for the project that was estimated by a U.S.-funded feasibility study to cost at as much as $5 billion. --0----