Foreign minister AK Abdul Momen visits Rooppur atomic power plant in Ishwardi, Pabna on 13 November 2020
Foreign minister AK Abdul Momen visits Rooppur atomic power plant in Ishwardi, Pabna on 13 November 2020 UNB

Foreign minister AK Abdul Momen on Friday said the image of Bangladesh will be brightened globally through positive use of nuclear power for people’s welfare after commencement of Rooppur Nuclear power plant, reports news agency BSS.

“We (Bangladesh) are for anti-nuclear arsenal, but we are also for welfare use of nuclear energy... we’ll prove it to the world,” he said after visiting the under construction of Rooppur power plant in Ishwardi, Pabna.

With the first nuclear power plant at Rooppur, Bangladesh will become the third Asian country -- after India and Pakistan -- to harness the power of atoms.

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The foreign minister said Bangladesh is always against nuclear weapons and prime minister Sheikh Hasina is vocal on it in the global arena as the pioneer of peace.

He recalled when India and Pakistan had developed nuclear bombs, prime minister Sheikh Hasina had taken initiative to restrain the nuclear race between these two South Asian nations.

Momen further said Sheikh Hasina’s government works for welfare of people while Bangladesh will not involve any regional geo-political issues.

The foreign minister was accompanied by science and technology affairs minister Yafes Osman and high official of foreign ministry including foreign secretary Masud Bin Momen.

Momen also said though the foreign ministry was deeply engaged with the Rooppur power plant from the beginning, the visit was largely overdue as the foreign ministry officials did not visit the premises before.

Noting that this is the dream project of prime minister Sheikh Hasina and the whole country, he said, the foreign ministry is also actively engaged in implementation part of the project.

Regarding negotiation with IAEA and the Russian Federation, Momen said the foreign ministry through Bangladesh mission in Vienna has been negotiating for the next course of action of the project.

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The foreign minister further said his ministry will be engaged for security training and transfer of technology as functioning of this plant is a continuous process.

The Tk 113,092 crore power plant on 1,062 acres of land will have two units -- Rooppur Unit-1 and Unit-2 -- with a power generation capacity of 1,200MW each. A third-generation technology is being used to construct the plant with a five-layer security system.

The first unit is scheduled to go into commercial operation by 2023 and the second one by 2024.