The government is set to pour first nuclear concrete into the Rooppur nuclear power plant (RNPP) project this month after ending the pre-construction phase, said officials.
Russian President Vladimir Putin is expected to be present at the event, when other top Russian leaders and top officials from Rosatom would take part, they added.
The first concrete, meaning the construction work, of the 2,400-MW under-implementation project was initially scheduled for August this year, but was later shifted to September followed by October, said a senior official of the Ministry of Science and Technology (MoST).
He said Bangladesh Atomic Energy Commission (BAEC) will appoint India's Global Centre for Nuclear Energy Partnership (GCNEP) to act as a consultant for the construction and operation of the RNPP.
An agreement between BAEC and GCNEP would be signed soon, he added.
The RNPP, the first nuclear power plant in Bangladesh, is being built under a supplier's credit deal with Russia.
The BAEC on August 30 signed a deal with Russian state nuclear company Rosatom on the return of spent nuclear fuel from the plant to Russia.
The agreement sets out provisions for reprocessing the spent fuel from the Rooppur plant at the Rosatom subsidiaries in Russia. The RNPP will use two generation 3+ power VVER-1200 reactors.
Russian contractors are already working on the project site.
The first of two units of the plant, having 1,000MW capacity each, is expected to commence operation in 2023, followed by the second in 2024.
Bangladesh under the agreement is set to ship the spent fuel by sea every five to seven years after the plant's beginning commercial operation, MoST Minister Yeafes Osman told the FE earlier.
The Rooppur project has a total cost of Taka 1.13 trillion ($12.65 billion), with Russian financing worth $11.38 billion being provided to Bangladesh for the project.
The Russian Bank for Development and Foreign Economic Affairs and Bangladesh's state-owned Sonali Bank Ltd. will work as authorized banks for the state loan.
The Bangladesh government will provide Tk 220.52 billion of its own funding for the project.
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