Next stop America for Russia's nuclear sales drive
By Svetlana Burmistrova and Jack Stubbs
MOSCOW, June 1 (Reuters) - Russia's Rosatom, already challenging French and other rivals for nuclear plant sales around the world, is now targeting entry into the U.S. fuel rod market, a top executive with the company has told Reuters.
Despite U.S. sanctions over Moscow's treatment of Ukraine that have hurt some Russian firms and individuals, state-owned Rosatom still holds an almost 20 percent share of the U.S. enriched uranium market.
Its fuel rod technology is not yet used in the United States, but the company sees potential for a breakthrough and a chance to take market share from rivals such as U.S. firm Westinghouse, now owned by Japan's Toshiba Corp.
"I can't tell you which, but there is a sufficiently large number of companies in the United States operating nuclear power stations who are interested in a new supplier," Rosatom Deputy Director General Kirill Komarov told Reuters in an interview.
He said Rosatom wants to build on its U.S. enriched uranium sales.
"We hope to get the same share in nuclear fuel rod supplies," Komarov said.
"There is always the danger of politicisation in atomic energy, but our cooperation with the United States was built on quite pragmatic principals," Komarov said, citing a 1993-2013 programme to supply low-enriched uranium.