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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Egypt to build its first nuclear power plant

RIA Novosti


CAIRO, February 8 (RIA Novosti) - Egypt will build its first nuclear power plant in the Mediterranean coastal town of El-Dabaa, reviving the country's civilian nuclear power program after more than two decades, the El-Ahram newspaper said on Monday.

Egyptian authorities announced in 2007 plans to build nuclear power facilities in the country to meet the increasing demand for electricity.

The north African state's nuclear program was originally suspended after the Chernobyl disaster in the former Soviet Union in 1986.

The paper quoted Egyptian energy minister Hassan Younes as saying the construction of the country's first nuclear power plant would take about 9 years. He said the decision to build the plant in El-Dabaa was based on a report by a team of international experts.

The minister was quoted as saying the construction would cost from $1.5 to $2 billion.

Russia, the U.S., China and the European Union support Egypt's peaceful nuclear program and have offered their assistance to the country's government.

In March 2008, during Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak's visit to Moscow, Russia and Egypt signed an agreement on cooperation in peaceful uses of nuclear energy. The document stipulates Russia's right to participate in tenders to build nuclear power facilities in Egypt.

In 2009, the Egyptian authorities officially invited Russia to participate in a tender to build Egypt's first nuclear power plant

Egypt, which possesses large reserves of uranium ore, has two experimental nuclear reactors, one of which was constructed in 1958 by the Soviet Union. The other was bought from Argentina.

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