Poland expects to conclude talks on the financing of its first nuclear power plant "in a matter of months", a senior government official said during the Polish-US Nuclear Industry Forum in Warsaw yesterday.
Piotr Naimski, Poland’s secretary of state in the Chancellery of the Prime Minister and government plenipotentiary for strategic energy infrastructure, said the government plans to set up a special-purpose company in which it will own a 51% stake, with the remaining 49% to be held by a foreign partner. State-owned power company PGE could be a shareholder in that special-purpose company, he added.
Poland's first nuclear power plant will be in operation by 2033, according to a draft energy policy document released for public consultation last November by the Ministry of Energy. The document envisages 6-9 GWe of nuclear capacity in operation by 2043, accounting for about 10% of Poland's electricity generation.
According to local media, Naimski said yesterday: "In order to stick to the schedule, we need to have the issue of financing concluded next year."
The forum was hosted by the Polish government with support from the government of the USA. It was announced during the second US-Poland Strategic Dialogue on Energy held in Warsaw on 31 August.
According to a joint statement, published yesterday by the US Department of Energy, the objective of the forum was “to continue engagement between the Polish and US nuclear industries and leverage Poland’s impressive economic growth”.
Forum participants included US nuclear technology and service companies, Polish and US manufacturing and engineering companies, industry councils, and 55 Polish companies.
US Secretary of Energy Rick Perry said: "I’m encouraged to see Poland embracing emissions-free nuclear energy and its contribution to energy security by making it part of Poland’s plans for a diversified energy mix to meet their growing energy needs."
He added: "As a strategic partner, I am thrilled with the level of participation from our nuclear industry today, and I look forward to continued nuclear industry engagement between our two countries in order to strengthen the region’s energy security and diversification while furthering business opportunities abroad."
The selection of the site for the first plant is expected to be made next year, while the selection of the technology and general contractor will take place in 2021, according to the draft energy policy document. The first plant - with a capacity of 1.0 to 1.5 GWe - would be completed by 2033. Up to six reactors, with a combined capacity of 6-9 GWe, would be put into operation by 2043.