VILNIUS - All four nations involved in the construction of a 4 billion euro nuclear power plant in Lithuania should not doubt the success of the project, President Valdas Adamkus told journalists on July 13, adding that new participants might be added to the project.
"We agreed without any doubts that the arrangement of the Baltic states and Poland is very strong and necessary. The project will be implemented, and the necessary talks will continue," Adamkus told journalists after a meeting with Latvian President Valdis Zatlers.
Adamkus stressed that the failure of Polish representatives to arrive on July 6 to sign a final agreement on the plant was due to Poland's government crisis and there are no grounds for doubts about the project's success.
Zalters said that construction of the plant, which would replace the Ignalina facility that will be shut down in 2009, is a common goal for the Baltic states. "There is no need to stop just because Poland has problems. We must not come to a situation when a country runs out of energy," the newly inaugurated president said.
Asked about the desirability of the involvement of a Russian company in the project, Adamkus noted that everyone has equal rights. "We are open to all," he said.
"We are not slamming doors to anybody. If a country wants to get involved, we will be open to negotiations," he said.
Zatlers, who in 1986 took part in the massive clean-up operation in Chernobyl, the site of the world's worst civilian nuclear accident, underscored the importance of the safety of new technologies.
The new 3,300-megawatt nuclear power plant is to be completed by 2015.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Gediminas Kirkilas appealed to Lithuanian politicians to concentrate on the construction of the new nuclear power plant instead of searching for ways to extend the lifetime of the Ignalina unit.
"Efforts to build a new plant are much more important than focus on a subject that is not too promising," he told journalists on July 11.
Lithuania has been using EU funds for decommissioning INPP, the prime minister said, and the country would have to pay back the money if it decided to extend the plant's operations.