Energy 27 April, 2023 7:35 am   
COMMENTS: Joanna Słowińska

Polish Briefing: Americans continue conflict with Koreans over Polish NPP I Over 100 Koreans work in Pątnów already I Tauron and Rafako settle

Westinghouse_Sign_Pittsburgh Westinghouse / photo by Wikimedia Commons

Americans won’t let it go

Westinghouse CEO spoke in Warsaw about the conflict with Korea’s KHNP on exporting technology to Poland.

“There are areas where we cooperate and agree with the Koreans, but there are certain aspects where we disagree. There is no threat to the implementation of our project in Poland with regard to KHNP,” said Patrick Fragman, president of Westinghouse, at a meeting with journalists in Warsaw.

“If Poland wants proven, good technology, then our AP1000 reactor is a proven solution,” Fragman stressed.

Westinghouse took KHNP to court as the company believes the export of APR1400 technology used by the Koreans and offered to Warsaw by Seoul, requires an export license issued by the US Energy Department, because it is based on an American solution owned by Fragman’s company. The case is pending in court and may end in a verdict or a settlement.

“We are in a legal dispute with KHNP regarding intellectual property rights. The court will decide whether the Korean side has the right to export technology based on the American AP1000 reactor,” said the president of Westinghouse in response to a question from

“The elections in the United States will not affect the construction of the nuclear power plant in Poland. Democrats and Republicans jointly support this project, also the construction will not be threatened in any way. Atom is the only way for the country, because Poland cannot rely on gas and other fossil fuels from Russia,” the CEO emphasised.

The first of the three Westinghouse reactors in Poland is expected to be built in Pomerania in 2033. Polska Grupa Energetyczna, ZE PAK and KHNP intend to build the first of two reactors in Pątnów in 2035.

Wojciech Jakóbik / Jacek Perzyński

More than 100 Koreans are working in Pątnów

Korea’s KHNP, which may one day construct an NPP in Pątnów has already engaged a hundred people in the PGE PAK Energia Jądrowa project.

President of the PGE Wojciech Dąbrowski took part in the International Conference ICAPP, which was held in Gyeongju, South Korea. The ICAPP Congress connects leaders of the nuclear power industry to exchange information, present work results, review the state of the industry and discuss future directions and needs for the implementation of new power plant systems around the world.

The meeting devoted to the discussion of current and future directions and needs of the development of nuclear energy, was attended by representatives of the world’s leading companies and institutions related to nuclear energy, including from South Korea, USA, Japan, France, Great Britain, Canada and the United Arab Emirates.

During his visit to Korea, Dąbrowski also met with Korean partners from KHNP in connection with the implementation of a joint project to build a nuclear power plant in the Konin region. The conversation with Whang Joo-ho, president of KHNP, was an opportunity to discuss the next steps in the project, including the planned feasibility study, site studies and environmental impact assessment. President Dąbrowski informed KHNP about the details of the establishment of PGE PAK Energia Jędrowowa, which will be a partner for the Korean company.

The president of KHNP stressed that the company attaches great importance to the Polish-Korean project. More than 100 people from KHNP are already involved in the implementation of the investment. He added that the company has the full support of the Korean government in the implementation of this investment.

“The nuclear power plant in the Konin region will provide a stable supply of cheap and clean energy, replacing phased out coal sources,” said Wojciech Dąbrowski, president of PGE. “Together with our Korean partner, we are implementing a unique project to build a nuclear power plant, which will be of great importance for achieving climate neutrality, protecting the environment, and above all fighting for lower energy prices for consumers,” he added.

“The target energy mix of Poland will be based on zero-emission energy sources: renewables and nuclear energy. According to the accepted assumptions, by 2040, the amount of installed capacity of all electricity sources in Poland will double to about 130 GW, and RES and atom will account for about 74 percent of installed capacity and will cover 73 percent of electricity demand. Part of this will be provided by the Konin nuclear power plant. According to the assumptions, it will provide 22 TWh of energy, which corresponds to 12 percent of today’s demand,” the PGE CEO emphasized.

PGE Polska Grupa Energetyczna / Jacek Perzyński

Tauron and Rafako settle on Jaworzno

The provisions of the agreement include acceptance of the settlement by the guarantors, agreement on the payment of PLN 240 million by the guarantors to Tauron Wytwarzanie, the right and obligation of the guarantors to take over a total of 150 million shares of the company issued on the basis of the resolution of the General Meeting of Shareholders dated April 17, 2023 in exchange for a non-monetary contribution in the form of the guarantors’ claims.

The settlement, which is the result of mediation conducted by the arbitration court at the General Counsel Office of the Republic of Poland, sanctions the settlement and termination of the contract. Under the agreement, the parties terminated the contract by terminating the contractual obligations, and also waived each others claims over and above those that were covered by the agreement. Rafako also released its subcontractors from all obligations that made it difficult for them to start cooperation with Tauron Wytwarzanie. The company emphasizes that the removal of all identified problems at the unit will be spread over time. Tauron Wytwarzanie established direct cooperation with the existing subcontractors of the main contractor, which was not possible before the conclusion of the agreement.

“Plans for target design and technical solutions are being developed, and the PLN 240 million received by the company as a result of the settlement provides opportunities for their implementation. The positive completion of these works is crucial for the future operation of the unit in the most advantageous configuration and with maximum efficiency,” Tauron said.

The settlement ends a months-long dispute between Rafako and Tauron. It concerned the defects at the new unit of the Jaworzno Power Plant, the contractor of which was Rafako and the user Tauron. The first believed that the operator used poor-quality coal, the second that the contractor poorly built the unit. The agreement does not determine who was at fault.

Polish Press Agency / Tauron/ Jędrzej Stachura