Speaker of the Seimas: the issue of the Astravyets nuclear power plant should concern the whole EU
Press release, 3 March 2017
On 3 March 2017, Viktoras Pranckietis, Speaker of the Seimas, met with Valdis Dombrovskis, Vice-President of the European Commission for the Euro and Social Dialogue, also in charge of Financial Stability, Financial Services and Capital Markets Union. It was stressed during the meeting that security of the Astravyets nuclear power plant was an issue of concern to the whole European Union rather than the matter of bilateral relations between Lithuania and Belarus.
“It is important that the EU Member States view the importance of this matter in the same way since the threats linked to the insecurity of this plant endanger not only Lithuania, at whose border the power plant is being constructed, but other EU Member States as well,” said the Speaker of the Seimas.
The Speaker noted that the approaches of the EU and Belarus towards international environmental and nuclear safety standards, safety culture and management of incidents in the Astravyets nuclear power facilities proved to be fundamentally different. “The recurrent incidents in the construction site of the Astravyets NPP, notably with regard to reactor shells, raise even greater concern,” said Mr Pranckietis.
He also raised another issue of great relevance to Lithuania – financing of the decommissioning of the Ignalina nuclear power plant. “Lithuania cannot unilaterally ensure proper closure of the Ignalina nuclear power plant. Therefore, providing adequate EU financial assistance in the next multiannual financial framework is very significant in this regard. It would help to ensure that the Ignalina NPP becomes a success story and a model of the EU’s nuclear safety”, said the Speaker of the Seimas.
The meeting also focussed on the geopolitical and security situation, the economic situation in the EU and Lithuania. Mr Dombrovkis said that, in the EU context, Lithuania’s economy, which was markedly reviving, was positively assessed. It was stated during the meeting that structural reforms were an essential element of the long-term and sustainable economic growth. The Government of the Republic of Lithuania is committed to fiscal discipline and structural reforms necessary for Lithuania. One of such reforms was the implementation of the social model. The expectation was voiced that in spring, when assessing the Stability Programme, the European Commission would recognise this reform as being structural and would flexibly apply the Stability and Growth Pact with regard to it.
Dalia Vencevičienė, Senior Adviser to the Speaker of the Seimas, tel.+370 5 239 6016,
mob.+370 698 42 071, e-mail: [email protected]