Tuesday, February 26, 2013
Toshiba To Enter Talks On Supplying Big Reactor To Finland
TOKYO (Nikkei)--Toshiba Corp. (6502) said Monday that a nuclear power company in Finland has awarded it priority negotiation rights for the construction of a large-scale reactor for a planned nuclear plant in the Nordic country.
The deal would mark Toshiba's first nuclear plant order since the Fukushima Daiichi disaster of 2011. While American subsidiary Westinghouse is building eight nuclear power plants in the U.S. and China, the Japanese parent has yet to construct one abroad on its own.
Toshiba has proposed a 1,600mw large reactor for Fennovoima Oy's Hanhikivi nuclear plant in northern Finland. If the deal is sealed, construction is expected to cost around 500 billion yen.
But uncertainty remains, with Fennovoima saying Monday that it may downsize the project to a midsize reactor, which would generate 1,000mw to 1,300mw.
The company is expected to decide on the reactor type at the end of March, and Toshiba plans to offer a proposal for a midsize reactor if Fennovoima opts for such a project. Toshiba would then compete for the order with France's Areva SA and a Russian firm.
Fennovoima, which aims to bring the plant on line in 2020, originally solicited companies that could build large reactors and then narrowed the field to Toshiba and Areva. The possibility of switching to a midsize reactor arose when major shareholder E.ON of Germany said last year that it would withdraw from the Finnish project.
Toshiba, no longer able to count on new construction of large plants in Japan since the Fukushima accident, must increase overseas orders if its nuclear power business is to survive. It wants to use the Hanhikivi project as an opportunity to draw up strategies to land orders for Olkiluoto 4 in southwestern Finland and from the U.K.
(The Nikkei, Feb. 26 morning edition)