Arak redesign progressing within schedule

MNA – AEOI’s spokesman Behrouz Kamalvandi said Sun. that cooperation with the Chinese side on the reconstruction of Iran’s Arak heavy water reactor has been progressing according to schedule.

Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of visiting Arak nuclear facilities on Sunday, Spokesperson for the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) Behrouz Kamalvandi maintained that the progress of the redesign of the Arak heavy water facility within the framework of cooperation with the Chinese side has been progressing according to the set schedule, “if not ahead of it”. He added that the reconstruction will be completed within four to five years’ time.

To questions about the US lack of commitment and its effect on the successful implementation of the nuclear deal, Kamalvandi stressed that Iran can reverse its nuclear activities to the pre-JCPOA era in one to one and a half year, adding “of course this is neither our intent nor what will happen to kill the deal, because the other side is fully aware of the fact that preserving the nuclear deal is also beneficial to them.”

Kamalvandi went on to add that a part of the Arak reactor’s redesign which includes the details will take about two years to be completed, saying Iran’s plan is to bring the reactor back on stream with the progress of the detailed design.

Under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action agreed between Iran and the E3/EU+3 (China, France, Germany, Russia, the UK and the USA, plus the European Union) in July 2015, Iran and China signed the first commercial contract for the reconstruction of Iran’s Arak heavy water reactor in April. The first primary phase of the reactor’s design was accomplished by Iranian experts over the past year and the performed design would be reviewed, confirmed and adjusted to international nuclear safety standards by the Chinese side under the contract.

Kamalvandi had previously said that Iran has no need for financial aid from 5+1 group of countries in redesigning Arak heavy water reactor, adding that foreign investment places a claim on part of the complex’s management.