MOSCOW, December 6 (RIA Novosti) – Russia will build two new reactors at China’s Tianwan nuclear power plant under an inter-governmental agreement signed on Thursday.
The bilateral protocol on the construction of Tainwan’s third and fourth reactors was signed in the presence of Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev and his Chinese counterpart Wen Jiabao.
Construction work will begin in December this year, Rosatom civilian nuclear power corporation head Sergei Kiriyenko said.
“At the end of 2012, the first concrete will be poured for the foundation of the third and fourth reactors,” Kiriyenko said, adding the nuclear power station’s site could accommodate as many as eight reactors.
The Tianwan NPP is the largest facility the two countries have built under a bilateral cooperation agreement. Its first stage includes two power units with VVER-1000 reactors and was put into commercial operation in 2007.
Atomstroyexport and the Jiangsu nuclear power corporation signed a general contract to build the NPP in 1997. The Russian company was charged with design work, equipment and material supplies, construction and assembly work, putting it into operation and training Chinese personnel.
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The growing outright rivalry between the United States and China gives Russia more foreign policy weight, enabling it to assume the role of a balancer. So far it has been doing so rather skillfully. Today it may participate in a joint naval exercise with China that Beijing positions as outwardly anti-American. But tomorrow it can team up with the naval forces of the Old World.