Preparations for building of the foundation pit have started at the site of Hanhikivi NPP in Finland. The first rock blasting took place on 19 January, according to Russia’s holding Titan-2, which is the main subcontractor.

Finnish company Destia Ltd has been selected the contractor for the foundation pit to build temporary roads, water drains, and temporary power supply and lighting.

The construction licensing process for the plant is on schedule and the pouring of first concrete expected in early 2018, plant owner/operator Fennovoima’s licensing manager Janne Liuko told NEI. Russian state nuclear company owns 34% of Fennovoima through its Finnish subsidiary, RAOS Voima Oy set up in 2014. Rusatom Energy International, a Rosatom subsidiary, was selected to supply the 1200MWe AES 2006 VVER reactor.

Kirill Komarov, first deputy director general for corporate development and international business at Rosatom told a press meeting that Hanhikivi 1 would have a positive impact on the economy of the Pyhäjoki region in terms of tax revenues during both construction and operation of the plant. According to Rosatom’s estimates, every job at a nuclear plant generates seven to eight jobs in related areas, he noted. The unit is expected to enter commercial operation in 2024.