Kazatomprom signs documents on cooperation with European partners

Azerbaijan, Baku, Oct. 28 / Trend S. Suleymanov /

During the official visit of Nursultan Nazarbayev, the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan, to France,a number of documents on cooperation have been signed between JSC "National Atomic Company "Kazatomprom" and the European partners.

The Agreement on joint research work in the field of solar energy (PV) has been signed between JSC "NAC "Kazatomprom" and the Atomic and Alternative Energies Commission (France) (Commissariat à l'énergie atomique et aux énergies alternatives ("CEA").

JSC "NAC "Kazatomprom" and the Bureau of Geological and Mining Research (Bureau de recherches geologiques et minieres ("BRGM") have signed the Memorandum on establishing the joint Kazakh-French scientific laboratory of rare and rare-earth metals. For Kazakhstan, development of REM deposits and production based thereon is a new trend of the country's industrial and innovative development which allows the Republic of Kazakhstan to have a high-value-added production and occupy its own niche in REM emerging market.

JSC "NAC "Kazatomprom" and the European Company of Monitoring and Strategic Consulting ("CEIS") have signed the Memorandum on organization of higher education and advanced training for the personnel of Kazakhstan nuclear industry.

Kazakhstan atomists are supposed to get education and training at French leading enterprises on such qualifications as mining industry, nuclear physics, metallurgy, chemistry of uranium compounds, fuel technology, and nuclear power plants design and construction.

Another agreement has been signed between the Nuclear Society of Kazakhstan and the Societe Française d'Energie Nucleaire. The public organizations that unite the atomists of two countries have agreed to strengthen the scientific and technological cooperation for the purpose of peaceful development of nuclear power and technologies in both countries.

Kazakh-French cooperation in the field of nuclear power began in 1996 when the first intergovernmental agreements on joint uranium mining in the Southern Kazakhstan region were signed. In that year, Kazakh-French joint venture "KATCO" was established, with АРЕVА (France) and JSC "NAC "Kazatomprom" (Kazakhstan) as founders.

Today we can speak on the full-scale cooperation: mining (two countries account for approximately 30 percent of the world's uranium production), uranium processing and nuclear fuel production now.

On October 6, 2009, in Astana during the official visit of the President of France, Nicolas Sarkozy, to Kazakhstan, the Agreement on establishment of Kazakh-French joint venture on nuclear fuel marketing for nuclear power plants, "IFASTAR" (Integrated Fuel Asia Star), was signed. The JV's main objective was to conduct the feasibility study for construction including design of fuel assemblies production line, and evaluation of the Asian target market as to the sale of integrated fuel packages to utilities operating in Asia. Feasibility Study development had been completed, and based thereon, in Paris, on October 27, 2010, the decision was made to establish, on the basis of AREVA project, a joint venture on fuel assemblies production in Kazakhstan based on Ulba Metallurgical Plant.

KAZATOMPROM is a national operator of the Republic of Kazakhstan for import and export of uranium and its compounds, rare metals, nuclear fuel for nuclear power plants, special equipment, technologies and dual-use materials. The Company's main activities include geological exploration, uranium production, output of nuclear fuel cycle products, construction of reactors and nuclear power plants, non-ferrous metallurgy and production of construction materials, power industry, science, social welfare and personnel training. At present, over 26,000 people are employed by the Company. Kazatomprom is one of the top uranium world producers.

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