An Armenian delegation will visit the US in the near future to study the capacities of the modular nuclear reactors on the ground, Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan said during the Q&A session at the National Assembly.
The statement comes after a senior State Department official said the United States is considering the possibility of building “small modular nuclear reactors” in several Eurasian countries, including Armenia.
“In a number of countries, including Armenia, we are assessing the feasibility of small modular nuclear reactors built with US technology that could facilitate greater energy independence from both Russia and the PRC,” Maria A. Longi, Coordinator of the Department of State’s Office of the Coordinator for U.S. Assistance to Europe, Eurasia, and Central Asia, said at a hearing of the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Europe.
The Government has a plan to develop the country’s nuclear capacities, Nikol Pashinyan said.
“Unfortunately, there is a deadline, after which the Metsamor Nuclear Power Plant cannot be exploited. Now we are holding active negotiations with several partners on building a new power plant,” he said, adding that such talks are being carried out with the Russian Federation, the United States, third countries.
“We are now weighing which of the options is more beneficial economically. Our energy experts are analyzing which capacity we need more,” PM Pashinyan said.
“The difference is that the modular reactors can have a lower capacity, i.e. we can build one module, and then add others,” he said.
“Other proposals are somewhat problematic as they envisage building plants with a capacity of 1000 MWt, while experts says there are problems with fitting 1,000 megawatts into our energy system,” the Prime Minister further elaborated.
“Of course, there are issues connected with the modular reactors as well, and we have to weigh which one is more beneficial economically,” Nikol Pashinyan said.