The Jordanian government approved the construction of a nuclear power plant by two Russian firms at a cost of around $10 billion. The plants are expected to supply Jordan with 12 percent of its energy needs by 2023, the Jordanian information minister announced Monday at a press conference.
The two Russian companies, Rusatom Overseas and Atomstroyexport Atom, will work together, the former operating the plant and the latter providing the nuclear technology, according to Agence France-Presse, which quoted Jordanian Information Minister Mohammad Momani.
The plant will include two 1,000-megawatt reactors and construction will be carried out in two stages, according to Khaled Tukan, the head of the Jordanian Atomic Energy Commission. The plant is expected to be completed by 2023 and will be built in the desert 25 miles north of Amman.
Jordan is looking to diversify its energy mix as it relies heavily on natural gas and oil imports. Currently energy costs increased as deliveries of natural gas from Egypt have fallen due to terrorists attacks on pipelines.
“Jordan imports 97 percent of its energy needs. The country needs to take advantage of nuclear energy, which will also enhance national economy,” Tukan said.
In 2007 Jordan set up a committee on nuclear strategy, which set out a program for nuclear power to provide 30 percent of the kingdom’s energy by 2030.