Power plant tender breaks down

  • 2010-12-06
  • TBT Staff

The new nuclear power plant will replace the now-defuct one at Ignalina.

VILNIUS - Lithuania's tender for the construction of the country's new nuclear power plant has failed as one of the leading bidders dropped out.

Korea Electric Power Corp, one of two leading contenders to build the plant, withdrew its bid. Local media and politicians, including Prime Minister Andrius Kubilius, have speculated that the Korean company dropped its bid because of political pressure from Russia.

“Realizing that important projects increasing energy independence receive strong resistance from those who have profited from the current situation, we will pursue our goals through even closer cooperation with regional states and EU institutions,” Kubilius said.

Though the bidding process has now broken down, Prime Ministers from the three Baltic states and Poland have reaffirmed their committment to following through with the project.

Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaite confirmed that the country would press ahead with one-on-one negotiations to see the project through.

"The investors refuse to cooperate, but it is possible to continue the tender and to continue direct negotiations. If the international situation is not conducive to construction of new plants, we will see that. Most importantly, Lithuania should continue to pursue its energy strategy, we need to guarantee energy independence in different ways - the connections [to Poland and Sweden] and everything is possible," the president said this weekend.

In a join project with the other Baltic states and Poland, Lithuania is building a new nuclear power plant to replace the Soviet-era plant at Ignalina that was shut down at the start of the year.