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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs        25  March 2011

Indonesia has expertise for nuclear plant

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The Nuclear Energy Agency [Batan] says Indonesia has the expertise required to build and maintain a nuclear power plant in the country.

“Batan has sufficient human resources to support the development of a nuclear power plant,” Batan spokesman Ferhat Aziz said on Friday.

He said that staff from the State Electricity Company and the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources would also be employed to work on the project.

“We have many experts who have been prepared [for a nuclear power plant] for decades. If you compare Indonesia to Korea, Vietnam and Malaysia, we are more than ready to ‘go nuclear’,” Ferhat said.

Batan’s responsibilities are limited to training and research, therefore, the agency must wait for the government to put the plans to work.

Ferhat said the project would not go ahead anytime soon because there were so many factors to take into consideration — such as the environment, climate, geology and geography and including finding a location not prone to tsunamis, volcanic eruptions or earthquakes.

“In Indonesia, there are many places suitable for a nuclear plant, such as Kalimantan, Bangka and the northern Java coast. Those places are relatively safe from tsunami, volcanoes and earthquakes,” he said.

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