Finnish nuclear reactor delayed further: reports

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The building of Finland's fifth nuclear power reactor, which has been plagued by numerous delays, is unlikely to go online in June 2012 as currently planned, Finnish media reported Tuesday.

"The construction side and installation start up have progressed somewhat slower than was planned," Jouni Silvennoinen, project manager for Finnish utility Teollisuuden Voima's (TVO) Olkiluoto 3 project, told Finland's leading daily Helsingin Sanomat.

The plant, which is being built by France's Areva and Germany's Siemens, has fallen more than three years behind its original schedule and the parties have blamed each other for delays and ballooning costs.

"The June 2012 (target) will be difficult to reach, but during 2012 the plant should be fairly close to complete," Silvennoinen said, adding primary components, like the reactor, would likely start being installed in June.

"There are hundreds and thousands of components, hundreds of kilometres (miles) of cable. The same goes for pipes. It will take time," he said.

TVO and two other utilities, Fortum and Fennovoima, have requested permits to build a new nuclear reactor each in Finland, and the government is due to give its proposal on the subject this month.

The proposal will then go to parliament for debate and approval.

© 2010 AFP

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