Even though Ukraine and the G-7 group of countries signed a deal in December 1997 to close Chernobyl by 2000, the issue remains unresolved.

Ukraine said it may not be able to close the station unless it receives help with completion of two nuclear units at Rovno and Khmelnitsky. About $1.5 billion is required to complete these units. The G-7 still has to agree to release the money. Ukraine maintains that any delay in completion of the nuclear facilities could delay closure of Chernobyl.

The German Chancellor suggested construction of gas-fired power plants instead of completion of the nuclear units. Ukraine intends to complete the two nuclear units even without financial assistance from the G-7.