Szijjártó: There is no EU competitiveness without developing nuclear capacities

9/26/23 8:00 PM
Without a cardinal increase in nuclear capacities, energy security cannot be guaranteed and climate protection goals cannot be achieved – Péter Szijjártó said at the IAEA General Assembly.

– The EU today is facing the most serious crisis in decades, with huge economic, security and energy supply challenges – Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Péter Szijjártó said at the General Assembly of the International Atomic Energy Agency. According to the Ministry, boosting nuclear energy production and radically increasing nuclear capacities is the solution to improve Europe's competitiveness, guarantee energy security and achieve climate protection goals. 

– With nuclear technology we can produce much more energy, much cheaper, much more safely – he said. The minister also pointed out that this would also reduce emissions, as illustrated by the fact that the 440 or so nuclear reactors currently in operatin in the world can replace around 180 billion cubic meters of natural gas.

– If we are serious about achieving carbon neutrality by 2050, we need to at least double nuclear capacity – he emphasized, adding: – We need to end the ideological and political debates around the use of nuclear energy, stop the ideological and political attacks on nuclear energy and create a level playing field, eliminating discrimination. 

The minister highlighted that he was pleased to co-sign the letter on the benefits of nuclear energy sent by IAEA Director General Rafael Mariano Grossi to this year's UN Climate Change Conference.

The minister also reported on the status of the Paks II. investment, and stated that the energy mix is a physical issue and a national competence. Thus, we consider any kind of obstruction or attack on our nuclear investment as an attack on our sovereignty – he pointed out.

Péter Szijjártó also highlighted that the Paks II. project is an international investment, with US, German and French companies playing a significant role alongside Russia's Rosatom, and that the most advanced technologies are used in the project, along with the strictest safety standards.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade also had a meeting with IAEA Director General Rafael Mariano Grossi in Vienna. – We agreed that we will continue to receive all professional assistance during the Paks II. project to ensure that it is carried out to the highest professional standards and under the strictest safety conditions – the minister said.

Péter Szijjártó also met with Alexey Likhachev, Chairman-CEO of Rosatom, with whom he reviewed the latest developments in the Paks II. investment. They agreed that the construction of the new Paks units is on schedule and the two units will operate by the early 2030s.