Vested interests keen to sell nuclear reactors to Indonesia
AUDIO Indonesia’s nuclear power plans http://www.radioaustralia.net.au/international/radio/program/connect-asia/indonesias-nuclear-power-plans/1005302 24 August 2012 Pressure is mounting on Indonesia to push ahead with planning for the country’s first nuclear power plant. Neighbouring Vietnam and Malaysia already have nuclear planning firmly in place, and nuclear power advocates within government are proving to be increasingly vociferous in Jakarta.
But for now at least a long standing scheme to build a nuclear power plant in Central Java is off President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono’s agenda, and has been ever since the Fukushima disaster in Japan last year.
So where does Indonesia go next ? Presenter: Richard Ewart
Speaker: Professor Richard Tanter, senior research associate, Nautilus Institute for Security and Sustainability
TANTER: Well there certainly are companies that want to be involved in it, there are certainly also foreign companies where nuclear power vendors, like Mitsubishi in Japan, Kepco in Korea, also Russian companies.
Unfortunately though, there’s a new factor, a wild card in the election campaign for president which is now beginning to get
underway in Indonesia. One of the leading contenders, Prabowo Subianto, who has a very famous or rather infamous record of human rights violations while a Kopassus military leader. He has come out and said Indonesia must get nuclear power, so that’s a big new change.
… don’t think he [the current President] will back nuclear power….. the pressures mainly are coming from as you would say before vested interests, people who want to build, people who think
this is the answer to the energy fix. But there’s no doubt that
countries like the United States, certainly Australia, certainly the
IEA would be watching very, very carefully. My own feeling is that
that’s the lower end of the risk at the moment. I think the risk from
Indonesia financially in terms of seismic risks are much higher, ….
In Indonesia, where, for example, senior officials from the nuclear
regulatory authority, the organisation supposed to control and
regulate nuclear activity in Indonesia’s research reactors, for
example, two of them went to jail for bribery. The implication being
you can buy your way into the nuclear regulatory agency, then you want
a lot more assurance about what would be regulating any nuclear power
developments in the future.
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