Japan's Toshiba Corporation and Russia's AtomEnergoProm have signed a general framework agreement under which they will explore collaboration in the civil nuclear power business.
According to the two companies, they will start feasibility studies to consider cooperation in areas including design and engineering for the construction of new nuclear power plants, manufacturing and maintenance of large equipment, and "front-end civilian nuclear fuel cycle business". In their press releases, the companies say that the agreement could contribute to "stable and secure supply" of front-end nuclear fuel cycle services in Japan, the USA and other countries. They also say that the "complementary relations" could lead to the establishment of a strategic partnership.
Speaking at the signing ceremony, Sergei Kiriyenko, director general of Russian state corporation Rosatom, said the event symbolized the start of a large-scale cooperation between two leading Russian and Japanese nuclear energy companies. "This cooperation will be beneficial not only to the employees of our companies, but also to users of products and services related to nuclear cycle throughout the world," he added.
In response, Harufimi Mochizuki, head of the Japan's Agency for Natural Resources and Energy, echoed Kiriyenko's views. "I recognize the importance and great possibilities of the Japan-Russia cooperation in the field of peaceful use of nuclear energy," he said, highlighting the importance of a continuous policy dialogue between the two countries.
AtomEnergoProm is a single vertically-integrated state holding company for Russia's nuclear power sector, established in 2007. Its remit covers uranium production, engineering, design, reactor construction, power generation and research institutes. The Rosatom Corporation, also established in 2007, holds all the shares in AtomEnergoProm on behalf of the Russian state.
Toshiba, which owns 77% of US reactor builder Westinghouse, has publicly declared its goal of achieving global nuclear operations.
(Source: World Nuclear News)