Bulgarian EconMin: Referendum Key for Belene N-Plant's Fate

Energy | October 1, 2012, Monday // 16:55|  views

Bulgarian Economy and Energy Minister Delyan Dobrev. File photo by BGNES

Bulgarian Economy and Energy Minister Delyan Dobrev has underlined the importance of the upcoming referendum on the fate of the Belene Nuclear Power Plant project.

Echoing the words of President Rosen Plevneliev and Prime Minister Boyko Borisov, Dobrev declared on Monday that the government will wait for the result of the referendum before negotiating with the potential investor in the project who emerged last week.

Dobrev pointed out that the question for the upcoming referendum should be carefully selected by the Parliament.

Last week, the largely unknown Delaware-registered Global Power Consortium expressed interest in taking over the project to install two 1,000 megawatt nuclear reactors at the Danube River town of Belene and build it without state funds or guarantees.

The consortium brings together the US investment fund Quantum Group, two large strategic investors, a big US bank and one operator, according to Bogomil Manchev, owner of "Risk Engineering" company and consultant for the alleged US investors for the project.

The Bulgarian government scrapped the Belene NPP project earlier in 2012, declaring it economically unfeasible. The pro-Belene Bulgarian Socialist Party then launched a petition for a referendum on the Bulgarian-Russian project's fate.

The inspection of the petition recently concluded, with 543 639 valid signatures, enough to make the vote irreversible.

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Tags: Belene, Nuclear Power Plant, Delyan Dobrev, Referendum, investor


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