STATE AND PROSPECTS OF THE RUSSIAN URANIUM MINING AND URANIUM PROCESSING INDUSTRY IN THE CONTEXT OF WORLD DEVELOPMENT
A major Russian political and economic objective is to increase exports, particularly for front-end fuel cycle services through Tenex, as well as nuclear power plants.
Russia uses about 3800 tonnes of natural uranium per year. After enrichment, this becomes 190 tU enriched to 4.3% for 9 VVER-1000 reactors (at 2004, now 13), 60 tU enriched to 3.6% for 6 VVER-440s, 350 tU enriched to 2.0% for 11 RBMK units, and 6 tU enriched to 20% (with 9 tU depleted) for the BN-600. Some 90 tU recycled supplements the RBMK supply at about 2% enrichment. This RepU arises from reprocessing the used fuel from BN, VVER-440 and marine and research reactors.
There is high-level concern about the development of new uranium deposits, and a Federal Council meeting in April 2015 agreed to continue the federal financing of exploration and estimation works in Vitimsky Uranium Region in Buryatia. It also agreed to financing construction of the engineering infrastructure of Mine No. 6 of Priargunsky Industrial Mining and Chemical Union (PIMCU). The following month the Council approved key support measures including the introduction of a zero rate for mining tax and property tax; simplification of the system of granting subsoil use rights; inclusion of the Economic Development of the Far East and Trans-Baikal up to 2018 policy in the Federal Target Program; and the development of infrastructure in Krasnokamensk.
In June 2015 Rosgeologia signed a number of agreements to expedite mineral exploration in Russia, including one with Rosatom. It was established in July 2011 by presidential decree and consists of 38 enterprises located in 30 regions across Russia, but uranium is a minor part of its interests.
Russia is engaged in international nuclear energy markets, far from the traditional sites of Eastern Europe. In June 2011, Rosatom announced that it was creating a "Rusatom" overseas company, a new structure responsible for building projects that could not benefit from them. It can be executed as a primary contractor as well as as owner of foreign capacities under a self-exploitation agreement (BOO). She actively strives for shopping in developing countries and has set up eight offices abroad.
The Soviet Union also used 116 nuclear explosions (81 in Russia) for geological research, creating underground gas storage, boosting oil and gas production and excavating reservoirs and canals. Most were in the 3-10 kiloton range and all occurred 1965-88.
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