The Philippine government may build nuclear power plants for deployment on land or sea—while simultaneously studying the revival of the mothballed Bataan Nuclear Power Plant—with the help of Russian technology, Russia’s state-owned nuclear agency said yesterday.
In a statement sent to the Inquirer, Russia’s Rosatom State Atomic Energy Corp. said both governments “intend to cooperate in the development of national nuclear infrastructure in the Philippines to support further implementation of the peaceful nuclear program in the country.”
Rosatom said both governments “will explore the possibilities for the construction of land based or floating nuclear power plants equipped with small modular reactors in the Republic of the Philippines.”
“In addition, the technical conditions of the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant (BNPP) will be assessed to determine the possibility of its reopening and eventual commissioning,” the Russian state firm added.
Rosatom deputy director general for international relations Nikolay Spasskiy and Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi signed a memorandum of understanding defining the terms of the cooperation, on the sidelines of the Asean Summit in Manila on Monday.
“Rosatom possesses a unique experience in the field of nuclear power plant construction projects and nuclear infrastructure development in many countries around the globe and we are ready to actively share this experience with our Philippine partners,” Spasskiy said.
The partners also plan to set up joint working groups aiming to exchange specialists and technical information, to conduct seminars and personnel training.
In May 2017, Rosatom and the Philippines’ Department of Science and Technology also signed an MOU on cooperation in the peaceful uses of nuclear energy.
In an interview yesterday, Cusi said the latest MOU firmed up the cooperative efforts that Rosatom and the DOE had been making in the past few months.
“This builds on the visit of Rosatom [representatives] to the BNPP site last August, which was intended to help us find out whether the Bataan plant could be [rehabilitated to operational status],” Cusi said.
“I expect to receive a report on the results of that visit very soon,” he added.