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Tuesday, December 16, 2008

No redundancies at Kozloduy nuclear station despite shutdown units

Five years after the shutdown of units 1 and 2 at Bulgaria's nuclear power station and two years after the closure of units 3 and 4, not a single employee of the power plant has been made redundant, Dnevnik daily reported on December 15.

Staff numbers have instead been gradually reducing, by about 130 people every year, through voluntary discharge or personnel reaching retirement age, according to the nuclear power plant.

Even so, the number of people assigned to the four decommissioned units is 1095, nearly a quarter of the power station's payroll of 4492, which is currently producing electricity at the twin 1000MW units 5 and 6.

The Economy and Energy Ministry has said that it has kept the employees on for two reasons. The first one was to prevent a “brain drain” and keep the specialists on payroll until they can be allocated to the nuclear power plant in Belene. The schedule for the opening of the first reactor of the new nuclear power plant will be in 2013-2014.

The other reason was that the Cabinet still hoped to re-start units 3 and 4 under concession. European Union officials, however, until now have been reluctant to indicate that they would agree to give its content for such a move.

Kozloduy power plant executive director Ivan Genov has confirmed that for the time being there will be no redundancies, reassuring the specialists for their immediate future, “unless of course some reach retirement age, or decide to terminate their own contract”. Some of the personnel has been relocated and employed at units 5 and 6.
(Source: Sofia Echo)

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