Kazakhstan eyes construction of new nuclear plants via ConstructionWeekOnline

Kazakh energy minister Vladimir Shkolnik has said that the country is looking to build two new nuclear power plants to meet demand placed on its current network infrastructure.

The country’s only nuclear plant was shut down in 1999 and it now relies on importing power from neighbouring countries to supplement its own power generation capabilities.

The government has two sites in mind: One of the new plants would be built near the town of Kurchatov and is “likely to be Russian-made”, Shkolnik told local media following a parliamentary meeting. Fittingly, the town is named after Soviet nuclear physicist Igor Kurchatov and was once the town was once the centre of operations for the adjoining Semipalatinsk Test Site.

The second potential site is Balkash, and US firm Westinghouse’s design for a reactor there was “one of the most promising” Shkolnik said, without elaborating. It’s unclear which is preferred out of the two.

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