Bulgaria will need to invest over BGN 100 M in the extension of the life of the two operational 1000-MW reactors of the Kozloduy nuclear power plant, according to its CEO Kostadin Dimitrov.
Speaking at the Bulatom energy forum in Varna Thursday, Dimitrov said the technical surveying of the two reactors will last 18-24 months. It is expected to provide answers on how to go about extending the life of Units 5 and 6 of the only Bulgarian NPP, whose 440-MW Units 1-4 were shut down in 2002-2006 as part of Bulgaria's EU accession negotiations.
According to Dimitrov, a consortium led by Russian nuclear operator Rosenergoatom and the French company EDF will most likely win the tender for extending the life of the Bulgarian NPP.
A total of 15 companies have purchased documentation for bidding in the tender, but some of them, including Rosenergoatom and EDF later united in a consortium.
"This is legal under the Public Procurement Act, and the tender can take place. I think that a winner will be selected in three months – in August or September," said the Kozloduy NPP CEO.
In his words, all technical procedures for extending the life of the two reactors will be completed by 2016, which is when Bulgaria's Nuclear Regulation Agency will analyze them, and will decide if they are sufficient.
The BGN 100 M needed for the investments will be provided by the plant itself, which currently sells some 30% of its electricity on the free market. The Kozloduy plant gives 80% of its profit to the state budget; however, the plant will request that some of this money be redirected for investments into Units 5 and 6.
In the fall of 2010, Bulgaria's Economy Minister explained that the license of Unit 5 of the Kozloduy plant expires in 2017, and of Unit 6 - in 2019, but that the government will take measures to extend their life.
In November 2010, the newly-appointed CEO of the Kozloduy NPP Kostadin Dimitrov forecast that the life of the two reactors will be extended by 20 years. Thus, Bulgaria's potential arrangements