Rosatom’s stand at the Sochi conference (Rosatom)

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Russia signed up to help Ethiopia start its first nuclear plant by 2029

29 October 2019 | By GCR Staff | 0 Comments

Russia and Ethiopia have agreed to cooperate on a programme intended to give Addis Ababa the ability to begin work on a nuclear power station within 10 years.

The framework agreement was signed by Rosatom and Ethiopia’s Ministry of Innovation and Technology during the Russia-Africa Economic Forum in Sochi.

The Russians will help to develop the foundations for an Ethiopian nuclear industry, including the writing of safety regulations and establishing storage facilities for nuclear fuel and waste.

The two sides will set up a committee to plan a list of projects, the centrepiece of which will be a 3GW nuclear plant, but will include reactors to create radioactive isotopes for medical, agriculture and research purposes.

Rosatom said in a press release that the agreement would “serve as a springboard for active dialogue between the two countries” and would create “a legal framework for cooperation in a wide range of sectors and for the implementation of selected joint projects”.

Alexey Likhachev, Rosatom’s director general, with Getahun Mecuria Kuma, Ethiopia’s minister of Innovation and Technology (Rosatom)

The agreement may also lead “in the long term” to the construction of an Ethiopian Centre for Nuclear Science and Technology. An agreement on this was reached in April of this year.

The agreement follows a memorandum of understanding signed in 2017, and is one of a series of nuclear deals agreed by Rosatom with African nations. The most advanced is the $29bn Dabaa plant in Egypt, but framework agreements have been concluded with South Africa, Rwanda, Uganda and Ghana, along with looser cooperation agreements with Sudan and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.   

During the Sochi conference, Russia agreed to allocate $190m to the 4.8GW Dabaa scheme. Other agreements were concluded earlier this month to study the feasibility of making parts for the Dabaa plant in Egypt.

Top image: Alexey Likhachev, Rosatom’s director general, with Getahun Mecuria Kuma, Ethiopia’s minister of Innovation and Technology (Rosatom)

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