South Korea lined up for Poland’s second nuclear plant

South Korea’s last nuclear export success was the Barakah nuclear power plant in 2009 (Wikiemirati/CC BY-SA 4.0)
Hot on the heels of Poland picking US nuclear engineer Westinghouse for the country’s first nuclear power plant, it has now signed a memorandum of understanding with South Korea to build its second.

If the agreement becomes a binding contract, Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power (KHNP) would build three reactors near the south Polish town of Patnow, World Nuclear News reports.

The agreement was signed by Jacek Sasin, deputy prime minister of Poland and South Korea’s trade minister Lee Chang-yang.

It comes two days after US nuclear engineer Westinghouse was selected to build Poland’s first plant, also with three reactors.

Previously a consumer of Russian natural gas, Poland has set aside $40bn to create its first nuclear power fleet with six reactors.

The memorandum of understanding describes the Korean agreement as “a new project to supplement the existing Polish government-led nuclear power plant plan”.

Under the agreement, the parties agree to “jointly prepare a plan for the construction of a nuclear power plant based on Korea’s APR1400 technology”. It added that they will “perform geotechnical, seismic and environmental conditions analysis” and estimate the budget for each stage of the plant’s life cycle.

It suggests a preliminary plan will be drawn up by the end of the year.

Sasin said: “Poland needs an inexpensive and reliable energy source. Nuclear power is essential … especially given the current geopolitical conditions.” He added: “This project will certainly serve as an opportunity to strengthen business cooperation between the two countries.”

Lee added that the project reflected the success of the government’s plan to expand its companies’ export markets. He said it “opened the door to the export of nuclear power plants for the first time in 13 years”, meaning since KHNP won the contract to build the UAE’s Barakah nuclear power plant (pictured) in 2009.

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