Finnish consortium Fennovoima has submitted a construction licence application to the Ministry of Employment and the Economy for permission to build the 1200MW Hanhikivi 1 nuclear power plant in Pyhäjoki, northern Finland.

The almost 250-page document included 13 appendices with details of the plant location, the reactor type, the main safety systems, nuclear waste management, project financing and Fennovoima's organizational structure.

Fennovoima is 66% owned by Voimaosakeyhtiö SF, while Rosatom's Finnish subsidiary RAOS Voima owns the remaining 34%. Finland's government requires at least 60% EU or EFTA ownership in the project. Croatian company Migrit solarna energija has recently jointed the project with a 9% stake, fulfilling this requirement, but the ministry has asked Fennovoima to provide additional information concerning the new shareholder.

"We received a significant new owner within a short period of time, and we fully understand that the Ministry wants to have thorough assessment of the new owner," said Toni Hemminki, CEO of Fennovoima.

Fennovima also noted that it plans to deliver additional documentation to the Finnish Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority (STUK) for the safety assessment 'in phases up until the summer of 2017.' A positive assessment from the regulator is necessary for obtaining a construction licence.

Currently work is being carried out to prepare the Hanhikivi site for nuclear power plant construction. The main contractor Russia's Titan-2 will begin its own preparatory work in July and Fennovoima aims to complete the infrastructure work by the end of 2017. Fennovoima plans to start construction of the nuclear plant after obtaining a construction licence, hopefully in 2018, and electricity production is slated for 2024.

Fennovoima has also announced new suppliers for the project. It said the turbine for the power plant would be based on Alstom's Arabelle technology and that safety automation will be supplied by Rolls-Royce or Schneider Electric.

Date: Wednesday, 01 July 2015
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