U.K. helps to close Ignalina

  • 2001-03-22
  • BNS
VILNIUS - Great Britain is to allocate 1.5 million euros ($1.35 million) for the decommis-sioning of the first reactor of the Lithuanian nuclear power plant, Brian Wilson, U.K. minister of state at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, said after the March 19 meeting with Lithuanian Economy Minister Eugenijus Gentvilas.

"I am happy to confirm Great Britain's decision to transfer 1.5 million euros to the Ignalina power plant closure fund. The government of my country is satisfied with Lithuania's decision to shut down the first reactor of the nuclear power plant by 2005," Wilson said.

Lithuania and Great Britain have been carrying out a bilateral nuclear safety program for five years. During that period the U.K. government has allocated 4.5 million euros to Lithuania. These funds were used for technical assistance as well as the study visits and training courses of Lithuanian specialists with an aim to increase the safety of operation of the nuclear power plant and to strengthen the State Nuclear Energy Safety Inspectorate.

Lithuania has pledged to shut down the first block of the Ignalina nuclear power plant by 2005. Last year in the conference of donors, which was held in Vilnius, the European Union and donor states promised to allot over 200 million euros for this purpose.

These financial means will be accumulated in the special nuclear power plant closure fund, which will be administrated by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.