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8 August 2014

Belarus, France to develop cooperation in nuclear, radiation security

MINSK, 8 August (BelTA) – The heads of the Belarusian Gosatomnadzor and the French Institute for Radiological Protection and Nuclear Safety (IRSN) have signed a framework agreement on cooperation in Paris, BelTA learnt from the nuclear and radiation security department of the Emergencies Ministry of Belarus.

According to specialists, the document envisages development of bilateral cooperation in a number of areas. "They include the transfer of methodology regarding inspections of the nuclear power plant construction, the implementation of the probabilistic safety analysis, the use of mobile laboratories to monitor the radiation situation, the organization of technical support and its integration in the international network," they noted.

During the visit to France which completed some days ago, the Belarusian delegation paid a visit to the IRSN crisis center to get familiar with the readiness for prompt response in case of nuclear and radiation accidents. "In the emergency response system French specialists assign a big role to continuous online cooperation with the meteorological office, which allows for monitoring the current radiation situation and forecasting its further development," the Gosatomnadzor said.

The delegation also got familiar with the work of the IRSN radiation monitoring laboratories in Vezin, France. The total system of laboratories occupies almost 3,500 square meters and has over 300 measuring instruments for radiological control. Gosatomnadzor head Olga Lugovskaya presented the Belarusian experience in the corresponding area. She informed foreign counterparts on the approaches to the organization of nuclear and radiation accident response systems in Belarus, including in terms of the BelNPP construction.

Representatives of the Gosatomnadzor and IRSN discussed steps to implement the bilateral agreement on cooperation.

The construction of the first power-generating unit of the Belarusian nuclear power plant in underway at the Ostrovets site, Grodno Oblast. The Belarusian nuclear power plant will have two power-generating units with the total generating capacity of up to 2,400MW (1,200MW each). The Russian design AES-2006 has been chosen to build the power plant. The design is fully compliant with international standards and IAEA recommendations. The first power-generating unit of the nuclear power plant is scheduled for launch in November 2018.