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Rosatom, Areva make bids to build nuclear reactor in Belarus

MINSK, August 1 (RIA Novosti) - The Belarusian government has received applications from the Russian state nuclear power corporation Rosatom and the French-German firm Areva to participate in a nuclear power plant construction project in the republic.

Friday is the closing date for foreign companies to make applications.

"We have received an affirmative response from Rosatom and Areva," said Vladimir Semashko, the ex-Soviet republic's first deputy prime minister.

He said the Belarusian government would decide within 10 days what kind of agreement would be signed.

"It will be either an intergovernmental or a tender agreement," he said.

Belarus plans to build a nuclear power plant with a capacity of 2,000 MW, with the first unit to come online in 2016 and the second in 2018. The plant is expected to have Generation III water-moderated reactors.

Belarus has sent invitations to Rosatom, Areva and the U.S.-Japanese company Westinghouse-Toshiba, the three main producers of the equipment, to participate in the tender.

The ministry previously said it had not received an official response from Westinghouse.

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