The United Arab Emirates and Russia plan to sign “in the near future” an agreement to work together on nuclear energy, Energy Minister Sergei Shmatko said Monday.

“After the signing of the cooperation agreement, we will have the potential to work on research reactors and we also plan to take part in the Emirates’ program with the Koreans,” Shmatko said after a meeting with Emirates Foreign Minister Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan.

The U.A.E. awarded an $18.6 billion contract in December to Korea Electric Power Corp. to build four nuclear plants by 2020 as it seeks to meet increasing demand for power. The plants, to be built on the coast of western Abu Dhabi, will each have a capacity of 1,400 megawatts.

“We are ready to cooperate with Russia in nuclear power on various aspects,” Sheikh Abdullah said after Monday’s meeting of the Russian-U.A.E. commission on cooperation. “By 2030, we plan to generate as much nuclear power so as to meet one-third of our energy consumption.”

Source: Bloomberg