South Africa: DOE Completes Pre-Procurement of Nuclear Build Programme

On 31March 2015 – The Department of Energy (DoE) announced that government has concluded the pre-procurement preparatory phase for South Africa’s nuclear new build programme.

South Africa Government continues to make significant progress in its engagements with various prospective nuclear vendor countries as part of the process towards the implementation of the expansion of the nuclear new build programme, as required for energy security based on a sustainable energy mix.

Government held consultations with a number of nuclear vendor countries including the United States of America (USA), South Korea, Russia, France, Japan and China. These are the countries that have Pressurized Water Reactor nuclear technology, similar to Koeberg Nuclear Power Plant, situated in the Western Cape. South Africa has been safely using this technology for the past 30 years.

As part of the pre-procurement phase and preparation for the roll out of the nuclear new build programme, Government has entered into several negotiations with vendor countries and has signed Inter-Governmental Framework Agreements (IGFA) with the Russian Federation, French Republic, and People’s Republic of China.

South Africa has also signed Agreements with the USA and South Korea. Inter-Governmental Framework Agreements with Canada and Japan are at an advanced stage of completion and are expected to be concluded soon.  These Agreements set out potential frameworks of cooperation that each country foresees where or how they can participate in South Africa’s new nuclear build programme. The platform was created for vendor countries to showcase and demonstrate their capabilities on how, if chosen, they plan to meet South Africa’s needs for the nuclear build programme including the required 9 600 MW (9,6 GW) nuclear power capacity.
In keeping with this policy requirement, the vendor countries were requested to present their offerings to address the entire nuclear new build programme value chain focusing on the following key aspects:

Nuclear Power Plant Technology and Construction

Multipurpose Research Reactor Technology and Construction

Financing and Commercial Matters:

Manufacturing, Industrialization and Localization

Human Resources and Skills Development

Public Awareness and Information Centers

Safety, Liability and Licensing

Nuclear Fuel Cycle (Front and back end)

Nuclear Siting and Permiting

Nuclear Non-proliferation Matters.

The procurement process will be presented for approval by Energy Security Cabinet Subcommittee and endorsed by Cabinet. Once endorsed by Cabinet the procurement process will be presented for deliberation by Parliament, and then government will launch a procurement process well in time to ensure that South Africa commissioned the first unit by 2023 and last unit by 2030.

The nuclear new build programme will also be an avenue to create jobs, develop skills, create industries, and catapult the country into a knowledge economy.

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