Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin inaugurated the construction of a new unit at the El-Dabaa nuclear power plant (NPP) in Egypt.

Both Presidents took part in a ceremony for pouring the first concrete into the foundation of the fourth power unit of the Egyptian nuclear power plant through a videoconference.

Al-Sisi said: “Adding nuclear power to the energy balance on which Egypt relies for power-generation purposes has vital significance for meeting specific demands.

“It meets Egypt’s demand for electricity needed to implement economic and social development plans. It also helps expand the use of new and renewable energy sources for attaining environmental sustainability and combating climate change.”

The El-Dabaa nuclear power plant is being implemented by Russian nuclear power company Rosatom in line with the Russian-Egyptian intergovernmental agreement of 2015. It will feature four power units with a total capacity of 4.8GW.

Each unit will have a generating capacity of 1.2GW by utilising generation III+ VVER-1200 pressurised water reactors.

The El-Dabaa nuclear facility is being built in El-Dabaa, Matrouh Governorate, on the Mediterranean coast, approximately 300km north-west of Cairo. It will be the first nuclear power plant in Egypt.

Putin said: “In fact, this is the beginning of a new stage in the construction of the first nuclear power plant in Egypt, a project of major importance for Russian-Egyptian relations, which will undoubtedly make a significant contribution to the development of the Egyptian economy and help strengthen its energy base.

“We will contribute to the creation of modern production facilities, skilled jobs, and the resolution of social issues. We will do this together because the new energy system allows us to do all this.”

In May last year, Rosatom started construction at unit 3 of the El-Dabaa NPP. The nuclear power project, which is estimated to cost around $30bn, entered into the construction stage in July 2022.