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Friday, October 24, 2008

Poland talks with South Korea about nuclear plants

South Korean President Lee Myung-bak said on Friday that Poland had asked South Korea for help in building its first nuclear power plants by 2012, but Warsaw later said it had not mentioned a firm deadline.

Following a meeting with Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk, Lee said in a statement that Warsaw had asked for Seoul's "strong interest and participation" in constructing two or three nuclear power plants as well as a 440 million euro ($570 million) liquified natural gas project.

The two leaders are in Beijing for the Asia-Europe meeting.

Slawomir Nowak, head of the Polish Prime Minister's office, later told Reuters: "Yes, we did talk nuclear power plants over with South Korea as it is one of the most experienced countries when it comes to nuclear energy, and we are willing to cooperate.

"However, we did not mention any particular deadline. We only said we were hopeful to make a final decision on such a plant and start construction works in 2012."

Poland, the European Union's largest ex-communist member, derives more than 90 percent of its electricity from coal. It has no nuclear power plants and virtually no renewable energy resources.

Nuclear power represents 40 percent of power generation in South Korea, which also has been building six nuclear power generation plants.

South Korea has been trying to sell its nuclear power generation techniques for years, but has not yet been successful.

One nuclear plant would cost $1 billion-$2 billion to build, with France, Canada, the United States and Russia among countries that are capable of selling nuclear power plant techniques.

(Source: Guardian.co.uk)

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