Ukrainian National Regulator of Energy Accused of Publishing Pro-Russian Propaganda

The Ukrainian State-owned nuclear power generating company Energoatom has issued a statement condemning disinformation published by Ukraine’s Energy Regulator the NKRECU, writes James Wilson.

 According to Energoatom, the Ukrainian Regulator has consistently failed to include in the calculation of the company's tariff for electricity supply the funds needed to pay an annual membership fee to the World Association of Organisations Operating Nuclear Power Plants (WANO). Energoatom, like all operators of nuclear power plants all over the world without exception, is a member of WANO.

The Regulator published a notice on their website for the revision of the tariff for electricity supply and heat production for Energoatom for 2017, to take effect from 1st October. 

In this notice the following line appears: "- expenses for the development of production - 184.6 million UAH (contributions to nuclear societies and associations 171.7 million UAH, of which UAH 164.9 million - contributions to WANO (Russian Federation) ".

The suggestion that the WANO is a Russian organisation is misleading. The World Association of NPP Operators is an international body and it is obviously not a Russian organisation. 

The company believes that this is a deliberate attempt to manipulate public opinion, with a view to encouraging hostile attitudes towards Energoatom, and to negate the company’s efforts  to argue for a reasonable tariff for nuclear generated electricity.

Energoatom has a very transparent policy of diversifying its supply base away from the monopoly position enjoyed by Russian suppliers dating back to Soviet times. 

When the Russian Federation commenced hostilities against Ukraine in 2014, Energoatom took steps to strengthen its independence from Russian influence, and took a separate membership of WANO for Ukraine paying the the transfer of payment of Energoatom's membership fees directly to the Coordination Centre of the Association, which is located in London. Energoatom has consistently informed the Ukrainian Regulator and the general public about this fact.

Energoatom's active independence as a member of WANO is clear. In 2016 at the Rivne Nuclear Power Plant an exchange partner check was carried out by experts from the Paris Centre of the Association.

It is therefore clearly false information that the Ukrainian Regulator should inform the Ukrainian public that Energoatom is paying a membership fee for WANO to the Russian Federation.

The World Association of Operators of Nuclear Power Plants was established in 1989 after the Chernobyl nuclear power plant accident. Since then all companies operating nuclear power plants have revised their security policies and have concluded that international cooperation in this field is necessary. In the same year, all five Ukrainian nuclear power plants, including Chernobyl, became members of this organisation.

Today WANO unites all nuclear power plants of the world and energy companies that operate about 450 nuclear power generating units. The integration and detailed analysis of best operational practice for different types of reactors around the world make the expertise of the Association invaluable. It is this knowledge that WANO experts share with their colleagues in the course of partner audits, which are the main instrument of the Association's activities.

In order to co-ordinate the work of WANO, the organisation has four regional centres in Atlanta, Moscow, Paris and Tokyo. Ukraine and another 12 countries, including India, China, Lithuania, Slovakia, Hungary and the Czech Republic are part of the Eurasian Region which has a headquarters in Moscow. In all these countries, VVER-type reactors are used, the design of which was developed in the former Soviet Union.

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James Wilson

James Wilson

James Wilson is a Founding Director of the EU Ukraine Business Council. He is a long term resident of Brussels, has more than 30 years international business experience in public affairs and corporate communications, and is a regular contributor to EU Today.

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