“The competition will get tougher as all of the five tenders were selected as preferred bidders, which is seen as part of Saudi Arabia’s strategy to maximize its leverage,” Trade Minister Paik Un-gyu said after opening a nuclear export support center at KEPCO’s Seoul office. “Saudi Arabia’s nuclear project is very important for South Korea’s nuclear exports.”
Paik said the government will boost collaboration with KEPCO and its nuclear subsidiary, Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power Co. as well as the local nuclear industry to win a second chance for the country in the Middle East, having previously won a US$20 billion contract with the United Arab Emirates in 2009.
Saudi Arabia plans to pick a winner next year for a project to build two nuclear reactors with total generating capacity of up to 2.8 gigawatts by 2030, according to the ministry.
The top oil producer aims to reduce its domestic oil consumption, which takes up 25 percent of its total oil production, and diversify its energy supply.
In December last year, KEPCO was selected as the preferred bidder for the Moorside nuclear power plant project in the UK.
By Park Ga-young (firstname.lastname@example.org)