Electricity production from a new nuclear power plant at Temelin in the Czech Republic would still be on track to begin ‘around 2025,’ despite delays of at least a year to the tendering process.

Two suppliers – Westinghouse with its AP1000 and the MIR Consortium of Atomstroyexport, Gidropress and Czech engineering group Skoda JS with the Russian VVER-1200 design – remain in the competition. Czech utility CEZ rejected AREVA for the Temelin tender in October 2012, but the French vendor continues to contest the decision.

CEZ said that it has made "small changes in its planned schedule in order to gain the best bid." The second round of negotiations is planned for late September and early October, according to a CEZ spokeswoman. However, the announcement of the winning bidder and the signature of a contract, originally planned for 2013, could be delayed by up to 18 months.

A final decision on the project depends on finalizing the state energy strategy and agreeing power purchase prices with the new government, according to CEZ. "These legislative procedures could last for 12 to 18 months," it said.

There should be no delay to the start-up of the plant, with the units expected to start electricity production around 2025.

"Postponing signing the contract with the supplier doesn’t necessarily mean that the start up would be delayed too, because in the meantime we can continue with all the preparatory work," CEZ said.

In related news, Westinghouse announced that it has contracted Czech firm Vitkovice Power Engineering to construct a mock-up of a sub-module for its AP1000 plant. Due to be completed early next year, sub-module 5 is one of 72 parts that will make up the larger 900-tonne CA-20 module that contains the area within the plant that will accommodate used fuel.