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Iran plans 19 more nuclear plants

December 25, 2007|From the Associated Press

TEHRAN — Iran plans to build 19 more nuclear power plants and will soon solicit international bids for their construction, a lawmaker said in a report published Monday.

"Contracts for the construction of 19 nuclear power plants, each with a capacity of 1,000 megawatts, will be put into international tender in the near future," Kazem Jalali was quoted as saying by the official IRNA news agency.

Jalali, a member of the Iranian parliament's National Security and Foreign Policy Committee, said the bids would be in line with legislation that calls for production of 20,000 megawatts of electricity through nuclear power plants.

Jalali, who made his comments Sunday, gave no time frame for the projects. His words do not necessarily represent the position of Iran's executive branch, headed by President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, or its supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

Iran does not have any operating electricity-producing nuclear power plants.

Russia is completing a 1,000-megawatt nuclear plant for Iran outside the southern city of Bushehr.

Iran received the first shipment of nuclear fuel from Russia last week, paving the way for the start-up of the reactor in the new year.

The government has previously announced plans to built six more reactors like Bushehr's, to produce a total of 7,000 megawatts of electricity through nuclear energy by 2021.

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