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TBP (Durban, South Africa) – Russia’s State Atomic Energy Corporation, Rosatom has announced they will promote nuclear technology and other related product and services in South Africa as a base to expand their operations on the African continent.
Sergey Kirienko, head of Rosatom, told TBP that “BRICS have decided to develop atomic power cooperation.”
He said Rosatom is planning to build 8-9 blocs of atomic plants in South Africa and they also held talks with South Africa over cooperation to produce medical isotopes like Molybdenium.
Rosatom is ranked fourth in the world for nuclear electricity generation, accounting for 17 per cent of the world nuclear fuel market.
A high-level delegation from the firm attended the BRICS Business Council meet yesterday.
Rosatom deputy director-general Kirill Komarov gave a presentation on “Nuclear as a factor of social and economical development” during the BRICS Business Forum on Tuesday.
Rosatom overseas press secretary in South Africa Loyiso Langeni said that the BRICS Summit will provide the company the platform to engage with key stakeholders on global politics and share information about its expertise, products and services in the field of nuclear technology.
“We are interested in the African continent as a whole and South Africa is the leader here,” Kirienko said.
Rosatom is already active in African countries like Namibia and Tanzania.
It conducts 45 per cent of the world’s uranium enrichment services, and is ranked the second in the world for uranium reserves and fourth for uranium production.
Rosatom said on Monday that it believed South Africa and its neighbours on the continent could benefit from the company’s expertise to increase their reliance on nuclear power.
Rosatom last year opened a marketing office in Johannesburg.
The company noted that International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) director-general Yukiya Amano, during a visit to South Africa in February, “made the point that other African economies such as Nigeria, Kenya and Egypt were also considering using nuclear technology as a means to diversify energy sources”.
Alexander Kirillov, the head of Rosatom’s marketing office in South Africa, said the company offered a comprehensive package that ensured localisation should South Africa decide to build a new nuclear power plant.
“Localisation will at the initial stage of the project be at 30 per cent of production, which will eventually peak at 65 per cent”, Kirillov said, adding that 15,000 direct jobs and between 9,000 and 19,000 indirect jobs would be created during the construction of such a plant.
Daria Chernyshova for The BRICS Post