Nuclear chief: Iran ‘has no intention to produce nuclear fuel beyond 60%

Eslami says Iran will soon use its nuclear fuel to power Bushehr plant

December 25, 2021 - 16:48

TEHRAN - Mohammad Eslami, the head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI), has told Sputnik that his country can produce nuclear fuel domestically and will soon start using it at the Bushehr nuclear power plant.

The construction of power units at the Bushehr nuclear power plant is the largest joint Russian-Iranian project.

The first block of the nuclear power plant, completed in cooperation with Russia, was connected to Iran's national power grid in September 2011.

The construction of the second block is underway, while a contract for the construction of the third power unit has been signed.

Moscow supplied Tehran with the nuclear fuel needed for the operation of the reactor of the first unit. The last supply of Russian fuel was made in April 2020.

Iran is already saving about 80 million barrels of oil by generating electricity at the Bushehr nuclear power plant, Eslami noted.

According to IRNA, Eslami also said Iran “has no intention to produce nuclear fuel beyond the 60 percent purity.

Eslami also confirmed that Tehran has paid its debt to Russia in full for the construction of the first block of the Bushehr power plant.

In August, Russian Ambassador to Iran Levan Dzhagaryan said Moscow and Tehran had not settled the Iranian debt for the nuclear power plant due to U.S. sanctions, which froze Tehran's funds in Japanese and South Korean banks.

However, the nuclear power plant continued to operate normally.

"Thanks to this nuclear power plant, Iran adds about 1000 megawatts of electricity into the grid and has already generated about 52 billion kilowatts of electricity to date," highlighted Eslami.

Nuclear facilities constantly monitored for potential cyberattacks

Concerning the security of Iran's nuclear facilities, the AEOI chief also confirmed that the critical infrastructure of Iran's nuclear facilities is secure, and vulnerabilities are being constantly monitored for potential cyberattacks.

Eslami pointed out that "any country pays great attention to ensuring the safety of its nuclear power plants... All our systems are secure, all their vulnerabilities are under control thanks to the measures we have taken.

"We hope that such heightened security measures in our nuclear infrastructure will disappoint those trying to compromise it," he added.

Iran's electronic systems have recently become a target for cyberattacks. In October, the Iranian fuel delivery system came under attack. The Iranian authorities later accused the U.S. and Israel of being behind the cyberattack.

In July, the computer systems of the Iranian Transport Ministry were disabled. Additionally, an attack on the management system of a state railway company disrupted train operations.