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Companies from China, Russia, South Korea apply to invest in Bulgaria’s Belene NPP

Companies from China, Russia and South Korea have applied to become strategic investors in Bulgaria’s Belene nuclear power plant (NPP) project, Reuters reported citing its sources. 

Plans to build the Belene power plant were scrapped in 2012, but Sofia was forced to reconsider after Bulgaria was ordered to reimburse over €600mn to Atomstroyexport (a unit of Russia’s Rosatom), which had won the contract to build the power plant and already started work.

In May, Bulgaria called a tender for strategic investor for the project. The government in Sofia hopes to finish the project within 10 years at a cost of up to €10bn.

Rosatom is among the companies that have now applied to become a strategic investor, the Russian company announced on August 19. 

Also among the applicants are China’s state-owned CNNC and state-run Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power Co (KHNP), a subsidiary of Korea Electric Power Corp, according to anonymous sources quoted by Reuters. 

France’s Framatome and General Electric are also interested in taking part in the project, the newswire reported. 

Energy Minister Temenuzhka Petkova will announce the bidders on August 20, and the government is due to make its decision by May 22, 2020.