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Kazatomprom to Spend $400 Million on Solar, Nuclear Fuel in 2012

Nov. 21 (Bloomberg) -- Kazatomprom plans to invest $400 million to $450 million next year as it expands nuclear fuel output with France’s Areva SA and develops solar batteries, said Vladimir Shkolnik, chief of the Kazakh state company.

Global economic concerns won’t affect plans, Shkolnik said.

“All projects we’re taking part in, the factory producing solar batteries in particular, are safe and there are going to be no more risks than we expect initially,” Shkolnik said today in an interview in the Central Asian nation’s capital of Astana.

Kazatomprom pledged $100 million to build a nuclear fuel factory with Areva in Kazakhstan, starting next year and completing in 2014, Shkolnik said. The target market is Southeast Asia, he said.

The French partner will also invest $100 million and will own 49 percent of the project, Shkolnik said. The plant will have a capacity of 400 metric tons of nuclear fuel a year, while production will depend on demand, he said.

“We’re working on it now, the launch is expected in 2014 year,” Shkolnik said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Svetlana Antoncheva in Astana via the Moscow newsroom at santoncheva1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Hellmuth Tromm at htromm@bloomberg.net

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