EPR1200 and SMR: EDF signs a cooperation agreement in Slovakia

On 25 August 2023, EDF and Slovakia’s Javys signed a cooperation agreement enabling more intensive discussions on the realisation of nuclear projects in Slovakia. EDF proposes the EPR1200 and the SMR Nuward power plant to meet the country’s needs.

“Signing of the Framework Cooperation Agreement (FCA) with the EDF is the result of mutual negotiations and detailed technical and commercial discussions in the field of potential cooperation leading to further steps towards the implementation of the large power SMR technology in Slovakia,” said Pavol Štuller, Chairman of the Board of Directors and CEO of Javys. “What we expect from the signing of the FCA is a more intense exchange of information in the field of new technologies so that we are able to assess their suitability for inclusion in the Slovak energy network,” he said.

As for its Czech neighbour, EDF is proposing the EPR1200 (1,200 MWe), a less powerful variant of the EPR (1,650 MWe), and the SMR Nuward power plant, which consists of two 170 MWe modules to meet the country’s needs. Slovakia has a population of 5.4 million and consumes just under 30 TWh of electricity annually. The country’s four reactors, with a capacity of around 450 MWe, produced almost 60% of its electricity in 2022. Nevertheless, Slovakia could face difficulties as early as 2040-2045 due to the closure of the V2 plant at Bohunice and an unfavourable regional energy context. This is why, in early 2022, the Slovak Nuclear Energy Company (JESS) (a joint venture of CEZ and JAVYS) submitted a permit application to the Slovak Nuclear Safety Authority (ÚJD) for the location and implementation of the project to build a new Generation III+ nuclear reactor at Jaslovské Bohunice.

EDF is committed to be a long-term partner of JAVYS and the Slovak Republic for the development of an economically sound and efficient nuclear program, leveraging its extensive experience, notably from its contribution to other nuclear programmes in Europe,” said Vakisasai Ramany, EDF Senior Vice-President in charge of New Nuclear Development. “This agreement is a pivotal step in further consolidating EDF’s objective to promote a European nuclear fleet approach based on European technologies and the support of a fully European supply chain, including that of the Slovak industry.”■

Gaïc Le Gros (Sfen)

Photo credit ©Ambassade de France / Service économique