This is a general view of the first Belarusian Nuclear Power Plant from outside the city of Astravets, Belarus. File/AP
Gulf Today Report
Belarus Ministry of Energy said in a statement on Thursday that it has resumed operations at a new nuclear power plant after successfully replacing some equipment.
The plant, recently inaugurated by President Alexander Lukashenko, has been reconnected to the grid after replacing some voltage transformers and testing thermal power equipment, the country’s energy ministry said. “The reactor of the first power unit is currently working at 40% of its nominal capacity.”
Built by Russian state-owned firm Rosatom and financed by Moscow with a $10 billion loan, construction of the power plant near the city of Astravets, in the western Hrodno region, was vigorously opposed by Lithuania, whose capital Vilnius is just 50 kilometres (31 miles) away.
Production at the plant was shut down a few days after it opened, with the energy ministry saying individual electrical measuring equipment needed replacing.
Lithuanian grid operator (TSO) Litgrid, located 20km from the plant, said it had detected a production stoppage at the plant at 1000 GMT on Nov.8.
Production had been ramped up to 400 MW on the day Lukashenko inaugurated the plant, Litgrid said.
Russian President Vladimir Putin plans to hold a “working meeting” with his Belarusian counterpart Alexander Lukashenko on Monday, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on Friday.
Putin and Lukashenko met twice in December but failed to resolve their differences, resulting in Russia cutting oil supplies to Belarus at the start of this year.
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