By Kang Yoon-seung
SEOUL, June 24 (Yonhap) -- A South Korean consortium has secured a five-year maintenance deal for the Barakah nuclear plant in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), the industry ministry said Monday.
The consortium of Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power (KHNP) and KEPCO KPS won the long-term maintenance service agreement (LTMSA) which centers on providing maintenance services and experienced manpower to Nawah Energy Company, the operator of the UAE nuclear plant, according to the ministry.
Doosan Heavy Industries & Construction Co., a major supplier of components to the Barakah plant, signed a separate maintenance service agreement (MSA) with Nawah Energy, it added.
The value of the deals and other details were not disclosed. The five-year contracts can be extended upon agreement by both parties, according to the ministry.
The scope of the deals were smaller than expected, as South Korean firms were anticipated to take exclusive charge of all maintenance work for a period of up to 15 years, industry watchers said.
The latest contracts, however, are significant as South Korean firms will be playing a key role in the entire process of managing the nuclear plant from construction to maintenance, the ministry said.
South Korea's state-run utility firm KEPCO has been building four APR-1400 reactors in Barakah, with one of the first units being prepared for a test run next year.
The contract is expected to help pave the way for South Korean firms to participate in other maintenance projects for nuclear reactors around the globe, the ministry added.
"KHNP will assign high-level officials and outstanding technical experts to the Barakah plant to support successful maintenance of the Barakah plant," KHNP CEO Jae-hoon Chung said. "The consortium also will spare no efforts to support UAE's endeavors to build its internal capability for nuclear power plant operation."
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