The Finnish finance minister Jyrki Katainen said last week that he would be happy to export surplus nuclear generated electricity.
According to Newsroom Finland, Katainen’s statement came just one day after the economic affairs minister Mauri Pekkarinen had advised the Finnish Broadcasting Company YLE that Finland could not export any of its nuclear-generated electricity. “Alongside the export debate one should bring up a debate over whether imports of nuclear-generated electricity should be banned,” Mr Katainen said during the management meeting. “Nobody has proposed that, yet there are plenty of those ready to ban exports,” he stated at the time.
Mr. Katainen said that the demand for nuclear generated power was part of that country’s policy to meet overall demand. At present, Finland imports around 20 percent of its electricity from foreign countries, notably from nuclear power stations in Russia.
Mr Katainen confirmed that his conservative party’s stand was to issue permits to the three utilities which have applied for grants to construct nuclear power stations in Finland.
French company Areva is currently undertaking the construction of the world’s most powerful nuclear reactor, which has been impeded by constant delays. The projects costs have almost doubled from the forecasted EUR 2 billion and have been mired in ongoing industrial disputes with local competitors.
Coalition partner the centrist party, of which Mt Pekkarinen is a member, argues that Finland had the need for one such station at most. Katainen acknowledged the differences in opinion but was confident that the coalition partners could work together in a dispassionate debate to reach a suitable agreement.