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The Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (ENEC) has awarded contracts worth US$6bn to six global companies to supply nuclear fuel services for the UAE's first nuclear power plant in Barakah
The contracted fuel will enable the plant, located west of Abu Dhabi, to generate up to 450mn MW over the first 15 years of its operations from 2017.
The firms awarded the lucrative contracts include Rio Tinto, France-based Areva, US-based ConverDyn, Canada’s Uranium One, Urenco and Russia’s Tenex. ENEC's fuel supply programme will begin in 2014-2015.
ENEC chief executive officer Mohamed Al Hammadi said, "These contracts will provide ENEC with long-term security of supply, high-quality fuel and favourable pricing and commercial terms."
The contracts range from the purchase and supply of natural uranium to conversion and enrichment services.
The enriched uranium will be supplied to KEPCO Nuclear Fuels (KNF), a member of ENEC’s prime contract consortium, which will manufacture the fuel assemblies for use in the four planned UAE units.
ENEC is aiming to build four 1,400 MW nuclear power plants with the first plant set to open in 2017 and the remaining three units scheduled to come online in 2018, 2019 and 2020.
In July, ENEC received regulatory approval for the construction of the first two nuclear energy units in Barakah.