India will early next month allot a new site in Andhra Pradesh to Russia to build yet another atomic power project, as preliminary works for the last two units of the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant (KNPP) in Tamil Nadu already commenced.

New Delhi and Moscow have agreed that at least 50% of the components required for the new atomic power plant in Andhra Pradesh will be manufactured in India.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will host Russian President Vladimir Putin in New Delhi early next month for the 19th India-Russia annual summit. A review of cooperation in the nuclear energy sector is likely to be high on agenda and the two sides are expected to agree upon an action plan for prioritising and implementing the areas of bilateral cooperation in the field of nuclear energy. The action plan is going to be a follow-up to the ‘Strategic Vision for Strengthening Cooperation in Peaceful Uses of Atomic Energy’, which was released when Modi and Putin met in December 2014 for the 15th India-Russia summit, sources told DH in New Delhi.

The Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited (NPCIL) and the JSC Atomstroyexport of Russia already signed the general framework agreement and credit protocol as well as contracts for the priority design works, working design and supply of the main equipment for the last two of the six units of the KNPP in Tamil Nadu.

The forthcoming summit between Modi and Putin may see New Delhi formally allotting a new site at Kavali in Nellore district of Andhra Pradesh for Russia to build the second nuclear power plant in India, sources said on Tuesday.

The NPCIL is also holding talks with nuclear power giant Westinghouse Electric Company of the United States for construction of an atomic power plant at Kovvada in Andhra Pradesh.

West Bengal Site

India had earlier planned to allot a site at Haripur in West Bengal for the second nuclear power plant, but the state government strongly objected to the plan, prompting New Delhi and Moscow to explore other sites. Both sides have been holding discussions on the proposed site at Kavali in Andhra Pradesh, and New Delhi is now ready to formally offer it to the nuclear companies of Russia.

The atomic power plant at Kavali in Andhra Pradesh will have six Russian VVER-1200 reactors with each having a generation capacity of 1200 MWe.

The KNPP is proposed to have altogether six VVER-1,000 reactors with an installed capacity of 1,000 MWe each.

The first four units of the Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant had 20% locally manufactured components.

The localisation will go up to 50% for the fifth and sixth units of the plant in Kudankulam as well as for all the six units in Kavali. 

The Modi-Putin summit early next month will also see the two sides reviewing implementation of 'Program of Action' agreed upon by the Department of Atomic Energy of Government of India and Rosatom of Russia in December 2015 for localisation of manufacturing of components of nuclear power units, sources in New Delhi said.