ARMENIA TO BECOME AN EXPORTER OF URANIUM
By A. Martirosian
AZG Armenian Daily
Economy. Russia-Armenia Relations
An agreement between Armenia and Russia about research and exploitation
of uranium deposits in Armenia shall radically change the status
of Armenia worldwide, stated yesterday Nature Protection Minister
Vardan Ayvazian and head of Nuclear Energy Department of the Russian
Federation Sergey Kiriyenko.
Mr. Kiriyenko said that his optimism is based upon the agreement
between the Armenian and Russian Presidents in Sochi. He also
informed that a major part of the research works on the Armenian
Uranium deposits has already been done. According to the research
of USSR experts, about 30 thousand tons of Uranium are stored in
the deposits of Armenia. Mr. Kiriyenko assured that more intensive
research may reveal 150-200% of Uranium previously detected.
The expertise is to be finished by the end of 2007. After that a joint
Russian-Armenian enterprise shall be established so as to start the
exploitation of the deposits. Armenia most probably will join the new
Nuclear Energy Center, founded by Russia and Kazakhstan. This will
give Armenia opportunity of becoming a producer of nuclear energy
and an exporter of Uranium.
Referring to the issue of the Armenian Atomic Power Plant, the head of
the Russian Nuclear Energy Department said that it can work properly
until the appointed date – 2016. As 2016 is already drawing near,
Armenia should think about constructing a new Atomic Power Plant,
he said. On behalf of the Russian Government he suggested Armenia to
undertake teh construction of the new power plant with output equal
to that of the present one.
Nature Protection Minister of Armenia Vardan Ayvazian said that
the excavation and processing of Uranium in Armenia will surely
encourage the Government about the construction of a new power
plant. Mr. Kiriyenko noted that even Russia, possessing large resources
of oil and gas, is still enhancing its nuclear power system, therefore
Armenia, being deprived of oil, should to the best to start its own
nuclear power program.