Budapest, October 31 (MTI) – European Union countries are following Hungary’s Paks 2 nuclear upgrade project with interest, said Attila Aszódi, the government commissioner in charge of the project, on the sidelines of an energy conference in Prague on Monday.
Most countries operate electricity systems using big fossil-fuelled power stations built in the 1970s-1980s, Aszódi told journalists. Nuclear power plants were typically built in the 1980s and these plants will reach the end of their original or extended lifespans within the next 15 years, he added. At the same time it is expected that the EU will introduce regulations so that fossil-fuelled power plants will have to be shut down within the next 15 years, he said. All this could mean that Europe will be facing a shortage in capacities if the necessary upgrades are not carried out. Paks 2 is an answer to these challenges, Aszódi said.
Aszódi added that Hungary’s talks with the European Commission on Paks 2 are technically over and a final agreement on the conditions for building the new blocks could be drafted soon. By the spring of next year all licences should be in hand and construction could begin in 2018, he added.