Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation Begins Nuclear Fuel Procurement Competition


The Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (ENEC) announced today that it has begun a nuclear fuel procurement competition for the supply of fuel for ENEC’s four proposed energy plants.

The Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (ENEC) announced today that it has begun a nuclear fuel procurement competition for the supply of fuel for ENEC’s four proposed energy plants. The total value of the contracts will be substantial and cover supply for the first 15 years of operations. The procurement process will provide ENEC with a set of contracts that provides long-term security of supply, favorable pricing and commercial terms and high quality fuel.

ENEC expects to begin commercial negotiations later this year on proposals submitted by the leading companies in the international nuclear fuel cycle market. The final contracts are expected to be signed in the first quarter of 2012.

ENEC will contract for natural uranium concentrate, conversion services (in which uranium concentrate is converted to material ready for enrichment) and enrichment services (in which the converted material is enriched to a level that is used in the fuel for nuclear energy plants). The enriched uranium will be supplied to KEPCO Nuclear Fuels (KNF), which will manufacture the fuel assemblies for use in the UAE plants. KNF is a member of ENEC’s Prime Contract consortium, led by Korea Electric Power Corporation (KEPCO).

The ENEC fuel procurement strategy is guided by the government of the United Arab Emirates’ support for international non-proliferation efforts. A policy document released by the government in April 2008 that was subsequently ratified by UAE Federal Law in 2009, outlined a series of commitments, including the decision to forgo domestic enrichment and reprocessing of nuclear fuel, two key elements to guarantee adherence to non-proliferation of the UAE peaceful nuclear energy program to the international community.

“This nuclear fuel procurement process is an important undertaking for ENEC as we continue our work to provide safe, clean, reliable and efficient energy to power the future growth of the United Arab Emirates,” said Mohamed Al Hammadi, ENEC’s Chief Executive Officer. “This procurement process has been designed to provide optimal security of supply and high quality fuel for ENEC, and will share the same standard of excellence and transparency as the international competition that led to the selection of our Prime Contractor.”

The publication of the international procurement competition is the result of an extensive year-long process that included initial discussions between ENEC and international nuclear fuel cycle suppliers. This procurement process is in line with the industry’s best practices, under which companies contract for the various aspects of the fuel cycle as a means to ensure security of supply, commercial advantage and high quality fuel. In addition, this process will enable ENEC to build a strategic commercial capability in nuclear fuel procurement.

“As with all of our strategic business initiatives, we are looking to gain experience in the nuclear fuel market so that Emiratis develop valuable expertise in a field that will be vital to our success in the long term,” said Mr. Al Hammadi.

ENEC is planning to build four 1,400-MW nuclear energy plants at the proposed site, Braka, in the Western Region of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, in order to provide the electricity needed to fuel the economic growth of the UAE. The UAE’s position on nuclear energy has received strong support from the international community. Government officials, non-proliferation advocates, and energy experts worldwide have praised the UAE’s approach to nuclear energy, referring to it as the “gold standard” for countries interested in exploring nuclear energy for the first time.

The Construction License Application for the first two proposed units is now under review by the UAE’s Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulation. Pending regulatory approval, the first plant is scheduled to begin delivering electricity to the grid in 2017. The following plants are scheduled to come on line in 2018, 2019 and 2020.

For further information about ENEC, visit www.enec.gov.abudhabi