The Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Energy and Natural Resources, has announced that Canada will make $3 billion in financing available to Romania for the construction of two new nuclear reactors. Canada hopes the financing opportunity will further support Romania as it strives for energy security and increased economic stability during its current precarious political climate.
“This is a strategic decision that can enhance our economic bilateral relationship and improve the foreign direct investment from Canada in Romania, offering security and stability in the region,” said Rares Burlacu, President of the Romanian Agency for Trade and Investment.
Romania will construct the two Canada deuterium uranium (CANDU) nuclear reactors in the southeastern Romanian town of Cernavoda near two existing CANDU reactors, which have been delivering nuclear power since 1996 and 2007. The new reactors are predicted to add 1,400 MW of clean, non-emitting electricity production capacity to Romania’s grid.
Ultimately, the two new reactors will help Romania phase out coal from its electricity generation by 2032, and with their addition, Romania will be able to supply 36% of its total electricity needs through nuclear power, up from the current 21%. The reactors will also supply power to neighboring Moldova, and Romania is currently in talks with Ukraine, Hungary, and Austria as well.
“In the '70s, Romania took the historical decision to be the only country behind the Iron Curtain to develop a nuclear program based on Western technology and the only European country to choose CANDU technology for its nuclear program. As the current geopolitical context has shown, this was the best decision that Romania could have taken at that time,” said Sebastian Burduja, Minster of Energy of Romania.
Canada and Romania have had a long-standing nuclear energy relationship since the signing of the Canada-Romania Nuclear Cooperation Agreement in 1977, and since then, their mutually beneficial relationship has expanded to include areas of trade, investment, security, and defense.
As part of the $3 billion financing deal, the funds must be used to buy supplies or services from Canadian companies.
"Canada's participation in this clean energy project will strengthen our reputation as a priority energy partner in Europe and beyond. This project will create good jobs for Canadians and Romanians alike. This will further support Canada's economic growth by encouraging greater partnerships between Canadian and Romanian nuclear industries, especially partnerships between our small businesses and entrepreneurs,” said the Honourable Mary Ng, Minister of Export Promotion, International Trade, and Economic Development.