Russia could receive $17 billion from megatons-to-megawatts deal

File Photo of Russian Nuclear Missile on Mobile Launcher Near Woods

(Interfax – MOSCOW, August 27, 2013) Russia could receive the anticipated $17 billion from the 20-year megatons-to-megawatts deal with the United States which expires in 2013.

Techsnabexport (Tenex), the Russian agent for the contract, said in a report that a preliminary estimate of revenue from the deal had been made, taking into account the low-enriched uranium deliveries, natural uranium sales and return of natural uranium to Russia still expected between now and the end of the year.

The federal budget stands to receive $13 billion in forex revenue from the contract, under which Russia ships highly enriched uranium (HEU) removed from dismantled nuclear warheads in diluted form suitable for nuclear power plant fuel to the United States.

Exports under the contract grew 2.4% last year to $1.033 billion as the cost of services to enrich the uranium and the natural component of low-enriched uranium grew. In all, 864 tonnes of LEU were shipped to the United States last year. The whole megatons-to-megawatts deal is 95% complete.

Under the deal, Russia uses natural uranium to dilute the weapons-grade uranium, and the United States Enrichment Corporation (USEC) ships an equivalent amount of this back to Russia. Russia will dilute 500 tonnes of HEU in all.

OJSC Production Association Electrochemical Plant, a part of the TVEL nuclear fuel corporation, said in a statement it had rounded off LEU production from HEU under the megatons-to-megawatts deal.

The plant has produced more than 4,000 tonnes of LEU over the 17 years and shipped its last consignment last week.