(Updates with CEZ chief’s comments from fifth paragraph.)
Oct. 31 (Bloomberg) -- CEZ AS, the Czech power producer planning an expansion of its Temelin nuclear station, gave potential contractors a technical specification for two new reactors ahead of a bid deadline next year.
Representatives from Toshiba Corp.’s Westinghouse Electric unit, Areva SA and a Russian-Czech group led by ZAO Atomstroyexport received the 6,000-page document at a ceremony in Prague today. They’ll need to submit bids by July 2, 2012.
The Czech government is drawing up a new energy strategy as it seeks to boost the share of atomic power in the country’s electricity output from the current 32 percent. Nations including China, Russia, Britain and the Czech Republic are pressing ahead with nuclear expansion plans even after Japan’s Fukushima atomic disaster this year stoked safety concerns, as they strive to meet energy demand while curbing emissions.
“Our long-term energy strategy is counting on the construction of two new Temelin units,” Industry and Trade Minister Martin Kocourek said today at a press conference in Prague. “If we want to increase our economic competitiveness while decreasing carbon-dioxide emissions, we need those new reactors.”
Three More Units
The winner of the Temelin tender will be chosen before the end of 2013, CEZ Chief Executive Officer Daniel Benes said at the press conference. CEZ may subsequently add a further three reactors, some of which would probably be built at the older Dukovany plant, and it’s “quite possible” that the winner of the Temelin tender would also take on those projects, he said.
CEZ expects construction to start at the beginning of 2017, with the first new unit connected to the grid in 2023 and the second no later than 2025, Benes said.
All three bidders have promised to subcontract part of the construction work to Czech companies. While job creation isn’t a criterion for the tender, the government has told the bidders it would welcome as much work for Czech engineering companies as possible, Kocourek said.
Atomstroyexport, controlled by Russia’s state-owned nuclear holding company Rosatom Corp., would subcontract as much as 70 percent of the work to Czech companies, Rosatom CEO Sergei Kiriyenko said last week. Areva would do the same, Ruben Lazo, the French company’s chief commercial officer, said today in an interview in Prague.
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