Babiš: Life of Dukovany could be prolonged by decade

The Czech prime minister, Andrej Babiš, says the service life of the Dukovany nuclear power plant could be extended by a decade. That would cost CZK 20 billion, compared to building a new nuclear unit, which would cost around 10 times that amount, he said.

Dukovany was previously expected to keep operating until 2035. Keeping it running for another 10 years would mean the Czech government would not have to decide now on how to fund the expansion of nuclear plants operated by state-controlled company CEZ.

CEZ is reluctant to launch a tender without state guarantees for the massive investments. However, Mr. Babiš argues that the power giant can handle the project on its own.

The minister of industry and trade, Marta Nováková, was quoted on Tuesday as saying that the government may postpone a decision on whether to force CEZ to construct new reactors at the country’s second nuclear power station, Temelín.