Russia and India have signed a protocol on the financing of the construction of the third and fourth reactors at the Kudankulam nuclear power plant (NPP) in southern India, local media said.
The document, signed on Tuesday in Moscow, stipulates that Russia will extend export loan to India for additional $3.4 billion to partially cover the construction, which is estimated at $6.4 bln. India must pay back the loan within 14 years from the start of the construction.
The protocol also has a separate provision for a Russian export loan of $800 million for financing the deliveries of up to 85% of nuclear fuel and control assemblies at 4% of annual interest, the Times of India said.
India signed a contract with the Soviet Union to build the Kudankulam NPP in 1988, while the actual construction started only in 1997 due to due to the political and economic upheaval in Russia after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.
In 2010, India and Russia agreed to build at least six power units.
The project involves 1,000 MW reactors of the VVER-1000 model being constructed by the Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited (NPCIL) and Russia’s Atomstroyexport company, a Rosatom subsidiary.
The construction of the first two units was halted in September 2011 over protests by local residents who demanded the scrapping of the Indo-Russian project citing the Fukushima nuclear disaster in Japan. Protesters had blocked all roads to the plant and would not allow the workers to enter.
The work resumed in March 2012, and the Kudankulam project is now at an advanced stage of completion with the first unit expected to be commissioned next month.
The completion of the second unit is scheduled within seven months from the commissioning of the first unit.