MOSCOW, October 1 (RIA Novosti)
Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borisov said on Monday that talks with a private investor interested in implementing the Belene nuclear power plant project should be halted until the results of a referendum on the project are made public, Sofia News Agency reported.
Certain issues remain to be resolved, including the funding source, electricity cost, the contractor who will build the electricity transmission grid, and the spent fuel storage site, Borisov said.
Last week U.S.-registered Global Power Consortium expressed interest in taking over the project to install two 1,000 megawatt nuclear reactors at the Danube River town of Belene and build it without state funds or guarantees.
Bogomil Manchev, owner of the company Risk Engineering, said that the consortium brings together the U.S. investment fund Quantum Group, two large strategic investors, a big U.S. bank and one operator.
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Any response would likely boomerang on Russia – the partnership between Rosneft and ExxonMobil is a case in point. The United States has hit Russia with a third round of sanctions. This time the Americans went with a higher caliber weapon, targeting Russia’s biggest energy companies (Rosneft and Novatek) and banks (VEB and Gazprombank).