Iran and Russia begin construction of new reactor at Bushehr nuclear plant
Near the city of Bushehr in southern Iran, on Saturday, 10 September, the work on the construction of a second reactor at the country’s only nuclear power plant began. The construction of two additional reactors being built with Russia’s assistance which have a capacity of about a thousand megawatts each and are worth more than 8.5 billion U.S. dollars, should be completed within the next ten years. The start of construction for a third reactor is planned for 2018.
The first Vice President of Iran, Eshaq Jahangiri, described the construction of the nuclear reactors as a "symbol of the achievements of Iran as a result of the nuclear agreement signed in July 2015" with the U.S., Britain, France, China, Russia and Germany. In particular, the document which provides for a significant reduction of radioactive uranium enrichment programs by Tehran and the monitoring of their implementation by the IAEA, has allowed Iran to get rid of harsh economic sanctions by the West and gave the green light to continue to develop the country’s peaceful use of the atom.
So far the only operating nuclear reactor at the NPP Bushehr was built with the participation of the Russian company Rosatom and was connected to the power network in 2011. In 2014, Moscow and Tehran reached an agreement on the construction of other reactors. In subsequent years Iran wants to build up to 20 nuclear reactors in the country to reduce their dependence on natural gas and oil to fuel its power system.