Russia, Bulgaria Discuss Belene NPP Project

VIENTIANE (Laos), November 5 (RIA Novosti) – Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev and Bulgarian President Rosen Plevneliev discussed on Monday the implementation of the Belene nuclear power plant project with Russian participation, Deputy Prime Minister Arkady Dvorkovich said.

“This [nuclear energy] was discussed, in particular, in the course of an informal meeting with the president of Bulgaria where nuclear projects are a subject of controversy,” he said.

“Nevertheless, the discussion is ongoing and we are still interested in the project.”

Bulgaria’s center-right Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria, GERB, government scrapped the Belene project in March 2012, declaring it economically unfeasible. The pro-Belene Bulgarian Socialist Party, BSP, then launched a petition for a referendum on the Russian-Bulgarian project.

The referendum will take place on January 27, 2013.

Discussions renewed recently on the abandoned project, with Rosatom subsidiary Atomstroyexport upping its claim against Bulgaria’s National Electricity Co. to 1 billion euros and a mysterious investment fund emerging with an offer to take over the project.

Bulgaria’s right-leaning Blue Coalition has challenged the legality of such a referendum.


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