Nuclear Energy Insider: Post Fukushima, Intensified Interest in Nuclear Power in the MENA Region Continues

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In a bid to meet increasing energy demands, the last decade has seen energy-rich countries in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) turn to alternative energy sources such as nuclear power and renewable energy. However, in the last few years the interest in nuclear energy has intensified despite issues raised following the accident at the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant in Japan.

There are a number of key challenges facing countries in the MENA region that are driving plans towards nuclear power generation, ultimately making this the most exciting region for nuclear contractors globally. In particular, countries in the region face:

  •      Increasing energy demands due to population and economy growth
  •      Energy independence
  •      Reduction of reliance on fossil fuels
  •      Increasing revenue on fossil fuel exports
  •      Reduction of carbon emissions

As a direct result of these challenges there are significant plans in place to deliver considerable nuclear generation capacity in the region by 2030. The Middle East Nuclear New Build Report 2012 has summarised these announced plans below:

UAE: the leader for nuclear power in the region – with a four unit NPP under contract with KEPCO. Its program has moved extremely quickly and the Braka project is looking to bring four 1400 MW APR1400 reactors online, starting in 2017.

Turkey: has a four unit NPP under a Build Own Operate contract and is aiming to reach a minimum of 5% of national electricity to be produced by nuclear power by 2020. The project entails the engineering procurement and construction of 4 VVER 1200 reactors by Rosatom. With the site selected and engineering work initiated, first concrete is scheduled for late 2013.

Jordan: having located significant uranium reserves, Jordon is aiming to develop a nuclear program that provides 6% of total energy by 2020. Jordon also has ambitions to become a major net exporter, and has announced its NPP EPC contractor, AREVA NP. Construction of the single unit 750 to 1000 MW plant at Majdal is scheduled to start in 2013

Saudi Arabia: In April 2010, Saudi Arabia announced its intentions to develop King Abdullah City for Nuclear and Renewable Energy, (KACARE), in response to the Kingdom’s growing energy demands, the production of desalinated water and to reduce reliance on hydrocarbons. In June 2011 these plans were developed with the announcement of 16 nuclear power reactors to be constructed over the next 20 years. The project will be offered for international bidding with the first two reactors targeted for 2021. By 2030 new NPP would generate 20% of Saudi Arabia’s electricity demand.

In conjunctions with The Middle East Nuclear New Build Report 2012, Nuclear energy Insider this week, have launched the first MENA Nuclear Power Market Map to celebrate a record growth in new Nuclear Power Plants (NPPs) in the MENA region. This map depicts:

  •     Exclusive forecasts of regional market growth
  •     Key details of current projects in the MENA region
  •     Construction time lines and plans for each MENA nation

You can access this exclusive MENA Nuclear Power Market Map for free at

Download the Nuclear Power Market Map to access the latest NPPs by using this link

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Maria Vincent
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