In an effort to break eastern Europe’s dependence on Russian nuclear fuel, Westinghouse, the Japanese-U.S. atomic group, is urging the European Union to establish competition rules.
A member of the U.S.-Ukraine Business Council, Westinghouse is currently the world’s largest supplier of nuclear fuel.
Currently Russia provides 36 percent of the EU’s uranium enrichment needs, but some reactors in eastern Europe are entirely reliant on tailor-made sets of fuel rods from Russia, including Hungary, Slovakia, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic and parts of Finland.
"There is a clear security of supply issue ... . You do not have a second supplier," Michael Kirst, Westinghouse's vice-president for strategy, said. "The utilities that are entirely dependent on Russia are playing a game of gambling here."
The security of supply mandate, led by Westinghouse, would force eastern European power companies to diversify sources.