CAIRO: Egypt’s government may not include the cost of its first nuclear power station in the state’s general budget for 2015/2016 FY, an anonymous official told al-Shorouk newspaper Sunday.
Egypt has mulled international bids to build its nuclear plant, located in Dabaa of Marsa Matrouh (183.9 miles from Cairo on the North Coast,) from Russia, France, China and South Korea; however, Egyptian officials told Youm7 May 5 that the Russian bid has more advantages.
The tender sets a condition that the foreign partner should finance the project with 80 percent of its cost, estimated at $ 1.5 billion.
However, the official, speaking on condition of anonymity for not being authorized to speak to media, said a group of scenarios for funding the plant construction have been referred to President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi, noting that Egypt “cannot afford funding the project.”
Commenting on the memorandum of understanding, signed between Russia and Egypt on peaceful nuclear cooperation in February, the official said the agreement “does not impede talks with other companies and countries.”
Sisi and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin announced in a Cairo press conference Feb. 10 that Moscow would assist Cairo to construct the plant.
The construction will begin in mid-2016 and last for five years, an official from the Ministry of Electricity told Youm7 May 5.