Leaders from Hungary and Russia are expected to sign a highly anticipated deal that will expand Hungary's 2 gigawatt (GW) nuclear power plant south of Budapest, Reuters reported. An anonymous diplomatic source confirmed to Reuters that Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban and President Vladimir Putin plan to meet in Moscow to sign the agreement. Bertalan Havasi, the press chief for Orban, did not comment further on the deal.
The agreement is for the installation of more blocks at Hungary's state-owned Paks nuclear power plant. In the past, Hungary said it wanted to almost double power generation at the 2 GW plant as Orban's ruling Fidesz party has promised declining utility costs to voters, The Wall Street Journal reported. Currently, the plant, which runs on four Russian-type pressurized water reactors, supplies more than 40 percent of Hungary's electricity.
The deal to provide new blocks for the plant may need an investment between $9.15 billion to $18.30 billion depending on the capacity added, according to the Journal. At $18.30 billion, the nuclear power plant expansion could be the biggest energy project for Hungary since the end of communism, Reuters said.