Japan Atomic Power Company (JAPC) has signed a contract with state-owned Electricity of Vietnam (EVN) to conduct a feasibility study into the construction of a nuclear power plant in the southern Ninh Thuan province.
Under the contract, signed at a ceremony in Hanoi today, JAPC will provide consulting services to help with site selection and a feasibility study for Vietnam's second nuclear power plant project.
The Japanese company will conduct geological surveys to determine what sites would be suitable for a nuclear power plant, as well as assessing the proposed plant's environmental impact. In addition, JAPC will study the basic design of the plant and evaluate different reactor designs. It will also conduct an economic and financial analysis of the project.
The 18-month study for the Ninh Thuan 2 plant will be funded by the Japanese government, who will provide a total of ¥2 billion ($26 million) to JAPC through the Minister of Trade and Industry.
Hoang Quoc Vuong, Vietnam's deputy minister of industry and trade, was quoted as saying, "This is an important milestone and shows Vietnam's determination to develop nuclear power plants, especially in the face of global economic difficulties and after the incident at Japan's Fukushima plant."
In May 2008, Japan and Vietnam signed a nuclear energy cooperation agreement, under which Japan would help Vietnam prepare and plan for the introduction of nuclear energy, educate experts in nuclear power and help the country formulate nuclear safety regulations.
On 31 October 2010, an agreement was signed between Vietnam and Russia for the construction of Vietnam's first nuclear power plant, at Phuoc Dinh, in Ninh Thuan province. Construction of the first two units at Ninh Thuan is scheduled to start in 2014, with the first reactor scheduled to be commissioned by 2020 and the second in 2021.
On the same day, an agreement was made that Japan would be the cooperative partner in a project to construct a second nuclear power plant in the southern Ninh Thuan province.
In January, Japan and Vietnam signed an agreement for cooperation in the development and use of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes.