ArmInfo. The terms for the implementation of the program to extend the life of the second power unit of the Armenian NPP will be extended until December 31, 2021. At the meeting on December 12, the Armenian government approved the signing of the protocol to the Armenian-Russian agreement of February 5, 2015.
As the Minister of Territorial Administration and Infrastructures of the Republic of Armenia Suren Papikyan noted in his speech, on the basis of this document, it was planned to complete the program by December 31, 2019. For this purpose, the Government of the Russian Federation issued a loan of $ 270 million and a grant of $ 30 million to the Government of Armenia. However, as a result of comprehensive studies of the main and additional equipment carried out within the framework of the project, the list of planned works was significantly expanded, and there was a need to extend both the terms of work, and loan repayments. The remaining funds under the program will be used to complete work to improve the safety of the Armenian nuclear power plant.
On December 10, in response to a question from ArmInfo, the Russian Ambassador to Armenia Sergey Kopyrkin noted that the issue of attracting the remaining part of the loan for the Armenian NPP will be discussed at the end of December. "On December 26, a meeting of the joint coordination committee is planned, at which this issue will also be the subject of discussion," he explained.
Earlier, ArmInfo, citing Deputy Minister of Territorial Administration and Infrastructures of Armenia Hakob Vardanyan, reported that in total, about $ 200 million (plus minus $ 2 million) was used in the extension program, of which 90% of credit funds ($ 270 million) and 10% of the grant ($ 30 million). The Armenian side is currently negotiating with Russian partners on the remaining loan amount. At the same time, payments will not be made on all, but only on the utilized amount of the loan, since the project is not fully completed. Starting from January 1, 2020, Armenia should start paying both at interest rates and the main loan amount. Full modernization of the unit will lead to more than 10% increase in its efficiency, which will make it possible to service the loan without any problems.
To recall, the loan was provided by the Government of the Russian Federation to Armenia for a period of 15 years with a grace period of payments of the first three years. This deadline expires December 31, 2019. Moreover, the annual interest rate on payments is 3%. The main objectives of the project to extend the life of the 2nd power unit of the Armenian NPP are to restore the resource and extend the operation of the station to 10 years (until 2026), increase the level of safety and efficiency of nuclear power plants. The Armenian NPP consists of two units with Soviet (Russian) VVER reactors. The first unit was commissioned in 1976, the second in 1980. In March 1989, after the Spitak earthquake, which killed 25 thousand people, the station was stopped. In November 1995, in connection with the most acute energy crisis, the second power unit of the station with a capacity of 407.5 MW was activated. In March 2014, the Armenian government decided to modernize the station and extend the life of the second power unit.