MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The agreement between Budapest and Moscow on joint construction of two additional reactors at the Hungarian Paks nuclear power plant (NPP) is groundbreaking as the sides had overcame all obstacles on the way to the project’s implementation, the chair of the Hungarian parliament's foreign affairs committee said Friday.
"The agreement on the Paks NPP could be characterized as a breakthrough. We understand the importance of this deal for Russia. It is also clear for Hungary that in a long-term perspective we can count on nuclear energy, which will be produced thanks to cooperation with Russia," Zsolt Nemeth, said at the meeting with his Russian counterpart Konstantin Kosachev in Moscow.
The Hungarian lawmaker added that Budapest hopes to develop joint projects with Russia in other spheres, such as the infrastructure, water management and transport.
"I think that the Paks NPP is a flagship of our bilateral relations, which will cause the development in other spheres," Nemeth said.
In late 2014, Russia and Hungary signed a deal to build units 5 and 6 at Paks, to be fitted with Russian VVER-1200 reactors. Russia is expected to provide Hungary with a loan of up to 10 billion euros ($10.8 billion) to complete the project. Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Peter Szijjarto said that the construction of the two new nuclear units is expected to begin in 2018.
The Paks NPP is located 100 kilometers (62 miles) from Budapest and 5 kilometers from the town of Paks. The station was built with participation of Soviet specialists in 1980s. The nuclear power plant generates more than 50 percent of the country’s energy.