Approximately JD112 million were spent between 2008 and 2017 on developing the Kingdom’s nuclear energy program, the Jordan Atomic Energy Commission (JAEC) said in a new report.
A large proportion of this figure was spent on local expertise as well as materials and supplies, the report said.
The Kingdom’s first research and training nuclear reactor, which was inaugurated in 2016 at the Jordan University of Science and Technology (JUST) in Irbid, cost JD56 million in addition to a JD59 million Korean loan to be paid over 30 years.
The 5-megawatt-reactor was built by the Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute and the Daewoo Group.
As for the main reactor, between 2009 and 2013, the commission conducted numerous studies with the participation of international nuclear power companies to select a site for the construction of the nuclear power plant.
Then in 2013, Jordan selected Russian technology to build the first nuclear plant with two reactors at a cost of JD3.5 billion and a capacity of 1000 megawatts. But this did not go far due to financial differences between both parties.
The commission is currently viewing other options, including new potential partners and lower costs, for its reactor.
An amount of JD1.688 million was also spent on scholarships for 175 Jordanian students who were dispatched to countries including France, Russia, South Korea and China to study nuclear engineering.
Uranium mining also cost the government JD8.76 million, while Synchrotron-light for Experimental Science and Applications in the Middle East, or SESAME, cost JD4.688 million.
The Kingdom has been seeking to diversify its energy sources away from the traditional heavy fuel and gas, which have long been used to generate electricity. However, there has been mass public opposition to the Kingdom’s investment in a nuclear program, with experts calling on the government to rely on renewable energy instead.