21:36 GMT +319 June 2018
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    YEREVAN, JANUARY 30 (RIA Novosti correspondent Hamlet Matevosyan) - To close down the Armenian nuclear power plant is the last thing Russia intends to do. On the contrary, the plant is in for improvements to increase its output, Boris Alyoshin, Russia's Deputy Prime Minister, said to the media in Yerevan, Armenian capital, today.

    "Whatever ample room for progress nuclear power industry may now leave, it certainly has a fine future," he remarked.

    The European Union insists on the plant, in its seismic zone, closed down as soon as possible, and is willing to donate 100 million euros for the purpose. Armenian authorities are of a contrasting opinion - the plant is to remain active till the country receives an equal and steadily supplied amount of electricity from other sources.

    The Armenian government has empowered Unified Russian Power Grid company with plant management for five years, staring September last.

    Armenian nuclear plant work was suspended, March 1989, to resume, November 1995, with a bad energy crisis. Its second unit, with a first-generation reactor VVER 440, of Russian design and manufacture, accounts for an average 30 to 40 per cent of Armenia's entire electricity. Experts think the plant can safely stay in action up to 2016.

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