YEREVAN (Armenpress)–Energy minister Armen Movsisian said last week that geologists will launch a massive campaign for uranium exploration later in the year. He said the investigation is expected to help specify the country’s untapped uranium reserves.
Earlier this year in April the governmen’s of Russia and Armenia’signed an agreement on joint development of Armenia’s uranium reserves which are believed to be enough to make the country self-sufficient in production of nuclear energy.
The agreement was signed in Yerevan by Prime Minister Serzh Sarkisian and Sergey Kirienko, head of Russia’s Federal Agency on Atomic Energy (Rosatom).
Under the agreement, Russia and Armenia are supposed to set up a joint
Venture to explore the southeastern Syunik region, which Armenian and Russian geologists believe has rich deposits of uranium.
According to Soviet geologists’ estimations, Armenia may have 30,000 metric tons s of uranium reserves, but experts believe that the real reserves may be double that figure.
If this project materializes Armenia will become a country with a full uranium production cycle from extraction of the metal to its transformation into nuclear fuel.
Some of that fuel would be supplied to the nuclear power plant in Metzamor, which the government in Yerevan plans to decommission by 2016 and replace with a new modern plant.