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Saudi Arabia, France Sign Nuclear Energy Cooperation Agreement

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Feb. 22 (Bloomberg) -- Saudi Arabia and France agreed to cooperate on developing nuclear energy for peaceful purposes as the world’s top oil producer seeks to meet growing demand for electricity.

The agreement allows the two countries to cooperate in the fields of production, use and transfer of knowledge of peaceful uses of nuclear energy, according to an e-mailed statement from the Saudi government.

“Saudi Arabia has decided to make use of alternative energy resources, such as atomic energy, solar energy, geothermal energy and wind energy,” according to the statement, which cited Hashim Bin Abdullah Yamani, president of the King Abdullah City for Atomic and Renewable Energy, known as KA-CARE. Power demand is forecast to increase by 8 percent a year in the Arabian Peninsula’s most populous country.

Yamani and France’s Minister of Industry and Power Eric Besson signed the agreement. KA-CARE was established by a royal decree last April to develop the kingdom’s policy of atomic and renewable energy policies, according to the statement.

To contact the reporter on this story: Mourad Haroutunian in Riyadh at mharoutunian@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Shaji Mathew at shajimathew@bloomberg.net

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