EU approves Russian nuclear power for Hungary

European regulators have approved Hungary’s deal with Russia to double Hungary’s power generating capacity with two new Russian nuclear reactors.

The €12bn project, funded almost entirely by a Russian loan, would expand Hungary’s sole nuclear plant, Paks, while creating 10,000 jobs, Russian President Vladimir Putin said last month.

Russia and Hungary signed an agreement back in 2014 but the deal has been subject to a lengthy investigation by EU regulators examining whether it falls foul of EU state-aid rules.

However, regulators said on Monday, 6 February that Hungarian government measures within the plan would ensure its operator would not be over-compensated or gain an unfair advantage over other energy providers, Reuters reported.

Paks will continue to be owned and operated by the Hungarian state.

The first of the two VVER 1200 reactors is due for completion in 2025 and the second a year later, said Reuters.

Image: Russian President Vladimir Putin, left, with the Prime Minister of Hungary, Viktor Orban on 2 February 2017 (Kremlin)

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