France offers its expertise to support South Africa’s nuclear programme and boost industrial localization and social transformation
16 February 2016
Dr. Pascal Colombani, Special Envoy of the French President for the nuclear partnership, met with South African government officials and industrial leaders to advocate the benefits of French expertise to secure the success of self-reliant South African nuclear energy development.
The aim is to boost skills development, manufacturing capabilities and employment opportunities for the South African people. In a similar situation, the construction of two EPR reactors in Taishan, China, with the French involvement, provided a substantial footprint in terms of training and local jobs. The same could be expected in South Africa.
In addition, for the past 40 years, the French nuclear industry and Eskom have been partners and have achieved world class operation of their respective nuclear power plants. Koeberg has been, and remains, a reliable source of electricity for the nation.
Dr Colombani explains it would be in the interest of South Africa to build on that technology, with which it is already familiar. France is ready to share its expertise and
experience. Its EPR reactor has already been certified by the authorities in France, China, Finland and the UK according to the highest standards of safety and performance. The French offer will also cover nuclear fuel management as well as research cooperation with NECSA and other organizations in the country.
Cooperation between South Africa and France would give the best chances to build a nuclear programme that will successfully contribute to industrial localization and social transformation, while providing national energy security and the production of a reliable, carbon-free and cost effective electricity system./.