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Government revises nuclear power plant costs; now $200 mln more expensive

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A Belarusian nuclear power plant construction site. Photo: bdg.by

On December 29, 2016 the Cabinet of Ministers of Belarus published Resolution No 1101 "On approving the project documentation for the construction of the nuclear power plant". The resolution almost fully repeats the similar document published in September 2013 and deals with the costs of various objectis associated with the ongoing construction of a nuclear power plant in Astraviec District.

Euroradio is particularly interested in the paragraph titled "Objects of the nuclear power plant". The 2013 resolution earmarked 44 581 929,12 thousand Russian roubles. In late December 2016, the cost increased up to 56 110 915,01 thousand by 11 528 985,89 thousand Russian roubles or around 200 million US dollars according to the December 2016 exchange rate.

However, officials at the Cabinet of Ministers assured Euroradio that the total cost of the Belarusian nuclear power plant will remain at the same level - around $10 billion. The costs grow in Russian roubles, because the Russian currency has significantly devalued over the past couple of years.

"The cost of the nuclear power plant will not increase per se. It will remain at the previously stated levels of around $10 billion. What happened was simply the adjustment of the volumes of construction and mounting works and their costs, the costs of materials and the cost of equipments... The costs have not gone up; they have been adjusted to meet the actual prices. The costs were in Russian roubles. But due to its devaluation, the costs had to be revised. That's all due to the changes of the exchange rate," Cabinet of Ministers' press office told Euroradio.

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