By: Staff Writer
Colombo (LNW): Sri Lanka will call for expressions of interest (EOI) in setting up nuclear power plants, with the aim of generating cheap electricity to support its economic recovery.
The government intends to include the safe use of nuclear energy as a part of the long-term generation plans,” Energy Minister Kanchana Wijesekera said in a post on the X social media platform, after meeting officials from the International Atomic Energy Agency in Colombo.
The government “will call for EOIs for establishing nuclear power plants & modern technology”, he said.
He said that Sri Lanka is evaluating offers for nuclear power plants from various countries, including Russia, the United States, India, and several European nations.
The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) is studying Russia’s plans to build a nuclear power plant in Sri Lanka.
Rosatom, the Russian the State Atomic Energy Corporation will help build a nuclear power plant in Sri Lanka.
Minister Wijesekera dismissed claims of a deal with Russian nuclear giant Rosatom, emphasising the need to determine the appropriate technology for the country and pre-plan various factors.
“Besides Rosatom, other companies and countries, including India, European nations, and the United States, have presented proposals with different nuclear power plant technologies deemed suitable for Sri Lanka.
The objective is to select the most suitable technology that aligns with the country’s needs,” he told journalists at the Presidential Media Centre titled ‘Collective path to a stable country’.
He said the Ceylon Electricity Board’s (CEB) 2023-2042 generation plan does not include nuclear power, adding the necessity of assessing when nuclear power generation will be required.
Minister Wijesekera clarified that no agreement has been reached with any company or country regarding the construction of Sri Lanka’s first nuclear power plant by 2032.
Russia has expressed its willingness to build a nuclear power plant in Sri Lanka if granted permission by the Government, but concerns have been raised locally and internationally regarding such projects.
He stressed that opting for a nuclear power plant requires a well-considered decision, citing there are many aspects to be considered.
“We need not be fearful, as numerous nations worldwide have successfully embraced nuclear energy. Even our neighbouring countries such as India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh have opted for nuclear power plants,” he added
The primary source of energy in the island nation is from imported oil and coal, and hydropower. The government aims to produce 70% of its electricity from renewable sources by 2030 and it sees nuclear power as a low-carbon option for its energy mix. It aims to be carbon neutral by 2050.