Belgium Confirms The Extension Of NPPs Operations By 10 Years

On 29th June 2023, ENGIE (ENS Corporate Member) and the Belgian Government signed an agreement specifying the terms of the extension of the nuclear reactors Doel-4 and Tihange-3.

This agreement incorporates the non-binding agreement in principle signed on 9th January 2023 and specifies the following terms and conditions:

  • The commitment of the two parties to implement their best efforts to restart the two mentioned nuclear units from November 2026 or, subject to the effective implementation of an announced modification of the regulation, from November 2025, with the aim of strengthening the security of electricity supply in Belgium;
  • The creation of a legal organisation dedicated to the two extended nuclear units, owned equally by the Belgian State and ENGIE, aligning the interests between the two parties and ensuring the sustainability of the commitments of both parties;
  • The economic model of the extension with a balanced distribution of risks;
  • An agreement on the setting of a fixed sum for future costs related to the management of nuclear waste, based on a new scenario defined by the ONDRAF/NIRAS, concerning all ENGIE nuclear installations in Belgium, for a total amount of €15 billion.

Read the full ENGIE Press Release (in French).

The Doel-4 and Tihange-3 reactors – the newest of Belgium’s nuclear fleet – are two Generation II reactors that began operation in 1985.

Both are 1,038-MW PWR units supplied by Framacec, a consortium of Framatome, ACEC and Cockerill.

Today, Belgium has five operating reactors, three in Doel and two in Tihange.

Doel-3 was permanently shut down on 23 September 2022, while Tihange-2 was on 31 January 2023.

In 2022, nuclear energy provided 46.4% of the country’s electricity.