TOKYO -- The Japanese government will help Kazakhstan build nuclear power plants by offering start-to-finish cooperation that includes sending engineers with decommissioning know-how.
Under the plan, Japan will advise Kazakhstan on procuring construction funds, which could amount to several hundred billion yen per reactor, and help train experts who can operate the facilities.
Japan has been working to decommission the reactors crippled by the Fukushima Daiichi disaster in 2011. Kazakhstan wants to obtain technologies to respond to emergencies as part of its push to adopt nuclear energy. The two countries will set up a body of decommissioning specialists this year.
Trade Minister Toshimitsu Motegi will visit the Central Asian country this week to sign a memorandum of understanding with Deputy Prime Minister Asset Issekeshev.
Tokyo and Astana in March 2010 signed the civilian nuclear agreement needed for exporting nuclear reactors. The new document will deepen this cooperation.
The overseas nuclear plant market offers promising business opportunities for Japanese companies. The government is also pitching domestic technologies to Vietnam and the United Arab Emirates through diplomatic efforts. With Russia showing interest in Kazakhstan's nuclear project, Japan will step up its marketing drive.