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Russia reaffirms continued nuclear cooperation with Iran

Moscow, Dec 27, IRNA -- Head of the Russian Federation's Atomic Energy Agency Alexander Rumyantsev said in Moscow on Monday that his country will continue cooperating with Iran on its peaceful nuclear program without any worries.

The Monday issue of Moscow-based periodical, Kommersant, quoting Rumyantsev said that an agreement on delivery of nuclear fuel for Bushehr power plant and return of the spent fuel will definitely be signed in Tehran in January.

Turning to the implementation of Bushehr power plant, he said that it will become physically operational by late 2005 and added that it will be connected to the national energy system in 2006.

Putting Russia's revenue through export of atomic equipment in the current year at 3.5 billion dollars, he said this shows an increase of 500 million dollars compared to the figure for the previous year.

Rumyantsev noted that though Russia could have earned considerable revenue through establishment of new power plants in foreign countries, no new agreement has been signed to this effect.

Rumyantsev, is scheduled to visit Tehran in late January to hold talks on the two countries' continuing nuclear cooperation.

A preliminary agreement has already been reached between the two sides on the visit.

Earlier, Rumyantsev had said that Russia was ready to construct seven other nuclear power plants in Iran.

Tehran and Moscow are currently working out the technical details of an agreement that would bring the nuclear power plant in the Iranian port city of Bushehr on line in 2006.

The issue on the return of spent nuclear fuel has seen operations of the power plant pushed back several times from its initial target of 2003.

In August, Iran said the plant would become operational in October 2006, a year behind schedule.

Once operational, the Bushehr power plant is projected to generate 1,000 megawatts of electricity, 6,000 megawatts less than Iran's nuclear power production target for 2021.

... Payvand News - 12/27/04 ... --

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