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Thursday, 10 November 2016 00:00

Uganda in Talks With Russians Over Nuclear

KAMPALA, Uganda, November 10, 2016 (EABW) — The government has started talks with the Russian Federation to forge away forward that could see Uganda take the next steps towards nuclear power development.

The co-operation between the two countries seeks to position Uganda in acquiring expertise and technology from Russia as well as promoting the co-operation between Russia and Uganda in nuclear power.

These were the central issues of discussion when senior representatives held talks in a meeting held in Kampala.

Rosatom State Atomic Energy Corporation which was led by Viktor Polikarpov Rosatom's Regional, Vice-President for Sub-Saharan Africa met with President Yoweri Museveni and officials from the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development.

Rosatom is the Russian Federation national nuclear corporation bringing together some 400 nuclear companies and Research and Development institutions that operate in the civilian and defense sectors.

In the meeting, Museveni supported the development of nuclear power in the near future, but emphasized the importance of professional training of local staff.

Possible areas of cooperation determined include nuclear infrastructure development, staff training, public acceptance, nuclear medicine and agriculture.

The Ugandan party expressed interest in Russian nuclear technologies and Rosatom's proposals regarding NPP construction.

At the meeting both parties confirmed a willingness to start cooperation in the peaceful use of nuclear power and to sign the Framework Memorandum of Understanding between Rosatom State Atomic Energy Corporation and the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development of Uganda.

In 2002, the Parliament of Uganda approved the principles and areas of the peaceful use of nuclear power and in 2008 passed the Atomic Energy Act establishing the Atomic Energy Council, the national regulator, and the Nuclear Energy Unit forming part of the Ministry of Energy.

In line with the Uganda National Development Plan, under Vision 2040, Uganda intends to use its uranium reserves to generate electricity using nuclear power stations.

Officials have noted that by 2035, Uganda will need to generate capacity totaling up to 40 GW and this can be realized easily through nuclear power.

It is reported that the government of Uganda is in preparations to build the country's first Nuclear Power Plant which is expected to come forth by 2034.

Rosatom view Africa as the final frontier, it is the last booming economy, and it is currently the fastest growing economy in the world, with a regional growth of 5.7% per annum. But like any growing economy, Africa is not without its problems and is currently facing a number of challenges. Arguably, the biggest of these challenges is electricity.

It is reported that only quarter of Sub-Saharan Africa's population have access to electricity.

This means that about 600 million people are living with limited or no access to a reliable supply of electricity.

In order for Africa to continue and even increase its current growth potential, it needs a reliable and affordable source of base load power to stimulate industrial activities and bolster economic growth and nuclear power could be a better option.

Rosatom believes nuclear power is a environmentally-friendly, safe, reliable and cheap method of producing base load power.

Rosatom actively interacts with a number of African countries which have shown interest in developing nuclear power, including Ghana, Nigeria, Egypt, Tunisia, Morocco, Algeria and Kenya.

With 70 years' expertise in the nuclear field, Rosatom claims to be a global leader in technologies and competencies offering cutting-edge industry solutions.

The companys says; 'We work on a global scale to provide comprehensive nuclear services that range from uranium enrichment to nuclear waste treatment'.

Africa: Uganda Taps Russia for Nuclear Power

By Moses Mugalu, The Observer

Uganda's ambition to produce nuclear energy has seen it look up to Russia for help, according to a media statement issued recently.

A statement from P&L Consulting, which is based in Kenya, noted: "The government of Uganda has started talks with the government of the Russian Federation meant to see Uganda take the next steps towards nuclear power development. The co-operation between the two countries will see Uganda gain expertise and technology from Russia."

The statement noted that President Yoweri Museveni met with officials of the Russian firm, Rosatom State Atomic Energy Corporation, which was led by Viktor Polikarpov, its regional vice president of sub-Saharan Africa, in Kampala where they discussed plans for nuclear energy.

While Uganda has always had plans for developing nuclear, the plans have always been cut short, especially in light of the perceived risks this kind of development would come with.

Uganda is thought to possess sizeable deposits of uranium needed to produce nuclear power.

However, the inauguration of the Atomic Energy Council, within the ministry of Energy and Mineral Development, was seen as a strong step in developing nuclear power.

 

 
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