Indonesian and Russian delegates discussed a Russian offer to help Indonesia build nuclear power plants. The Russian side in the discussion was led by Valery Yasev and the Indonesian side by House of Representatives (DPR) Speaker Marzuki Ali, reported the Indonesian Antara news agency.

"The Indonesian government has to try to convince the public that nuclear technology for power generation is safe," Hidayat said on the sidelines of the Asia Parliamentary Assembly (APA) meeting here on Wednesday . Nuclear energy must be promoted as one of the solutions to the problem of depleting non-renewable energy sources, and it is the government`s duty to make Indonesia`s nuclear energy development program run well, said Hidayat who is also former chairman of the People`s Consultative Assembly (MPR).

At the meeting, Marzuki Ali welcomed Russia`s offer to help Indonesia build nuclear power plants. He added Indonesia would still need time to familiarize the people comprehensively about the government`s nuclear energy development plan or the use of nuclear technology for peaceful purposes.

Yasev was quoted as saying at the meeting that Russia was committed to cooperation with Indonesia in the energy field, including in the use of nuclear technology for peaceful purposes. Therefore Russia was interested in participating in the eventual bid for construction of a nuclear power plant at Indramayu, West Java. The Russian delegate also said a company would be assigned to do the job should Indonesian be interested in building a nuclear power plant.

Russia had already established cooperation with China and Vietnam in constructing nuclear power plants. Indonesia already has a plan to build a nuclear power plant as a solution to the over-dependence on non-renewable energy sources such as coal, oil, and gas, on which the country relies for electricity generation.

In 2004, President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono ordered a study on nuclear energy, and then in 2006 he announced a plan that a nuclear power plant would be completed by 2016 in Jepara, Central Java. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) had given the green light to Indonesia to construct a nuclear power plant in Jepara. However, a total of 12 locations in the country have actually been identified as a suitable site for its first nuclear power plant.

Source: QNA