Ukraine's Energy Minister Halushchenko visits a nuclear fuel enterprise. Photo: Ukraine's Energy Ministry
Ukraine’s Energy Minister Halushchenko visited the plant that will produce nuclear fuel for domestic nuclear power units and later for export to other countries.
Today, 17 VVER-440 units are operating in Europe; for them, there is currently no alternative to Russian fuel. Ukraine, for its part, has already started production of components for VVER-1000 fuel units and will subsequently start production of fuel for VVER-440 units. The project is implemented by Energoatom in cooperation with the American company Westinghouse.
“Unfortunately, many European countries remain dependent on Russian nuclear technologies. At the same time, Ukraine, having abandoned Russian nuclear fuel, has switched its nuclear power units to nuclear fuel from the American manufacturer Westinghouse. The Czech Republic, Slovakia, Finland, and Bulgaria have also expressed a desire to make this transition. And in the future, Ukraine may become a supplier of nuclear fuel to these countries,” said Halushchenko.
According to the Minister, the production line of the Ukrainian enterprise will produce fuel assemblies for nuclear reactors of nuclear power plants. In 2023, it is planned to complete licensing and launch commercial production of shanks, and in 2024 – commercial production of heads for fuel cassettes. These components will be used to produce nuclear fuel for Energoatom’s needs at the Westinghouse plant in Västerås, Sweden.
Energoatom’s President Petro Kotin added that Energoatom plans to launch its own nuclear fuel production line in three years.
“Ukraine is a world leader in nuclear energy. And today, our nuclear experts and American partners are working to oust Russia from the global nuclear technology market,” emphasized Halushchenko.
This project is an important step towards energy independence for Ukraine and reducing Europe’s dependence on Russian nuclear technologies. It also represents a significant opportunity for Ukraine to become a leading player in the global nuclear technology market.