by Mohammad Ghazal | May 20, 2015

AMMAN — Jordan and Russia’s Rosatom will sign two agreements within the next two weeks necessary for the completion of the plan to build the country’s first nuclear power plant, according to Jordan Atomic Energy Commission Chairman Khaled Toukan.

The first agreement covers the water cooling studies of the plant while the second includes the revision of the project’s environmental impact assessment, Toukan told The Jordan Times on the sidelines of the Jordan International Energy Summit, which concluded on Wednesday.

“These two agreements are essential and represent a necessary step towards making progress in the project,” Toukan said.

He added that about 40 per cent of the country’s electricity needs will come from nuclear energy by 2025.

Toukan noted that there is an increased adoption of plans to build nuclear reactors in the region and globally with Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the UAE, Turkey and many others planning to do so.

According to the official, some 72 nuclear power plants are currently under construction worldwide.

During a session on nuclear energy, Milko Kovachev, vice president of Rusatom Overseas, said work is on track in the project.

He added that the power purchase agreement, the fuel supply agreement and the shareholders agreement will be signed in 2017.

Construction work on the plant, which includes building two reactors with a capacity of 1,000 megawatts each at a cost of $10 billion, is expected to start in 2017, he said.

Kovachev also reviewed different aspects of the project including safety procedures.

Jordan recently reached a deal with Rosatom under which Russia will provide enriched nuclear fuel for the reactors for the first 10 years after which Jordan has the option of buying nuclear fuel from Russia or any other market.

In March, Jordan signed an inter-governmental agreement with Russia to build and operate the nuclear power plant.

Russia’s Rosatom will own 49 per cent of the project.—-toukan