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Is Paks extension not urgent anymore?

February 6th, 2016

Twelve days before Prime Minister Victor Orbán’s visit to Moscow, a left-wing commentator suspects that both governments may have reasons to slow down the preparations for the planned extension of Hungary’s nuclear power station.

In Népszava, Tamás Bihari doesn’t exclude the possibility that President Putin of Russia intends to cancel the project due to his country’s serious financial difficulties. The fall in oil prices and the departure of foreign investors make it extremely difficult for Russia to finance its diverse engagements. The last time Hungary talked about the Paks project with a Russian representatives was in December, but since then Russia has cancelled several investment projects, including two agreements to build hydroelectric power stations in Kyrgyzstan. Hungary is also under mounting criticism from the European Union which suspects that the agreement on building two new blocks to replace the old ones at Paks does not conform to union rules. For as long as the probes and infringement procedures on this issue are underway, Hungary may deem it wise not to rush ahead with the project, Bihari concludes.



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