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Russia has no plans to import spent nuclear fuel

ST. PETERSBURG, October 2 (RIA Novosti) - Russia does not intend in the foreseeable future to bring in spent nuclear fuel from other countries for storage and subsequent reprocessing, a senior nuclear industry official said Tuesday.

"There will be no import [of spent nuclear fuel] for storage or processing until we have resolved our own problems," said Andrei Malyshev, deputy head of the Federal Atomic Energy Agency (Rosatom).

He said only spent Russian-produced nuclear fuel may be brought into Russia.

"We only bring [fuel] from Ukraine and Bulgaria - fuel that we delivered earlier. Russia has never imported any foreign-made fuel," he said.

The Rosatom official said that he does not exclude the import of foreign-manufactured nuclear material for research purposes, adding that Russia has a unique technological base for nuclear fuel related research.

He also said that Rosatom would spend about 11 billion rubles ($400 million) in the next three years to build a "dry" storage facility for spent nuclear fuel in the town of Zheleznogorsk, in the Krasnoyarsk Territory in Siberia.

Malyshev said that the first unit is due to be put into operation in 2010, and that the storage facility, to be completed by 2015, will have an aggregate capacity of 36,000 metric tons of fuel.

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