The commissioning of Unit-1 of the Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant (RNPP) project is likely to be delayed for six months to one year, due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid made the disclosure while addressing the media after visiting the construction site of the project in Ishwardi of Pabna on Thursday (29 December).
Nuclear scientist and RNPP Project Director (PD) Dr Md Shawkat Akbar was also present at the press briefing.
As per the schedule, the 1st unit of the 2400MW nuclear power plant was to be commissioned by December 2023.
“However, due to the pandemic and Russia-Ukraine conflict, that time frame has been pushed to the mid to end of 2024,” the RNPP PD Dr Md Shawkat Akbar told reporters.
When asked about recent media reports claiming that a Russian ship carrying RNPP project materials, currently under US sanctions, was denied permission to dock in Bangladesh, the PD said, “This is a matter of the Foreign Ministry.
“They will be able to address this issue better.”
The Engineering Division of Russia’s Rosatom State Corporation is implementing the Rooppur project as the general designer and contractor.
The project will host two nuclear power units each with 1,200 Mw capacities.
The latest generation 3+ Russian VVER 1200 reactor will be used for power generation, which complies with all international safety requirements.