Ukraine continues to strengthen its energy independence and shows the world an example of how to remove the terrorist state of russia from the nuclear technology market. In particular, the first batch of nuclear fuel produced by Westinghouse Electric Sweden AB with the participation of specialists from the Ukrainian NNEGC Energoatom was loaded into the VVER-440 reactor at Rivne NPP.
Previously, reactors of this type operated only on russian-made nuclear fuel.
"The greatness of this day is the end of the russian monopoly in this segment of the nuclear fuel market. And I really hope that this day will pave the way for quick sanctions against russians in the nuclear energy sector," said Minister of Energy of Ukraine German Galushchenko during the celebrations dedicated to the event.
The event was also attended by Ambassador of Sweden to Ukraine Martin Öberg, President and CEO of Westinghouse Patrick Fragman, Managing Director of Westinghouse Electric Sweden Aziz Dag and President of Energoatom Petro Kotin.
German Galushchenko added that the contract for the supply of the relevant VVER-440 fuel assemblies was signed in September 2020 in the presence of President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy. Thus, even before the full-scale invasion, Ukraine took a clear course to get rid of dependence on russia in the nuclear industry.
"And the fact that we managed to do it so quickly is a great success and a significant basis for our further cooperation with Westinghouse, which is only expanding. This is a great day for the Ukrainian energy sector, for our cooperation with the United States and Sweden, where the plant is located," the Minister said, thanking the nuclear industry experts who worked in Sweden and Ukraine on the project.
Ambassador of Sweden Martin Öberg emphasized that his country supports Ukraine in the war against russia and is grateful to the Ukrainian people for their willingness to fight for democratic values.
Westinghouse CEO Patrick Fragman noted that Energoatom and Westinghouse experts had done a fantastic job in a year and a half, which usually takes six to seven years: "We did it together, not only for Ukraine, but also for most European countries, where nuclear reactors can now be completely independent of fuel supplies from russia."
In turn, Energoatom President Petro Kotin thanked the American partners for their cooperation in the VVER-440 and VVER-1000 projects, emphasizing their importance for strengthening Ukraine's energy independence and security.
"When the full-scale russian invasion began, we turned to our partners from Westinghouse with a proposal to accelerate the production of fuel for VVER 440 reactors. With our engineering support, they produced it in a year and a half and brought it here to Rivne NPP. I thank our partners for this, I thank everyone who took part in this," said Peter Kotin.
Aziz Dag, Managing Director of Westinghouse Electric Sweden, thanked all the specialists who worked at the plant in Sweden 24/7 to achieve the fastest possible result. He also emphasized the importance of the development in the face of winter.