Islamabad: According to reports, Prime Minister Imran Khan practically inaugurated the Karachi Nuclear Power Plant (NPP) Unit-2 (K-2), a third-generation plant with improved safety systems, on Friday.
The ceremony took place simultaneously at K-2 NPP in Karachi and Beijing, China, and commemorated the 70th anniversary of the two countries’ diplomatic ties.
PM Khan expressed his delight that the K2 nuclear power plant was inaugurated today, on the 70th anniversary of Pak-China diplomatic relations.
He said that Pakistan is eager to learn from China in a variety of areas, including managing rapidly expanding urban areas, poverty alleviation, and corruption control.
The China-Pakistan Economic Corridor‘s reach is being extended, he said, from connectivity and power sector projects to economic zones and agricultural technology.
The premier said that the two countries’ relations were at an all-time high and that Pakistanis admire and love China because Beijing has always had Islamabad’s back when it mattered most.
Internal and external accident management capabilities, as well as enhanced emergency response capability, are available at the K-2 nuclear facility.
It has a 60-year lifespan that can be extended by another 20 years. The power plant has been planned to have higher availability and capacity factors, as well as a longer refueling period.
The K-2 plant’s construction began in November 2013, and fuel loading began on December 1, 2020, following approval from the Pakistan Nuclear Regulatory Authority (PNRA).
Until reaching criticality at the end of February this year, a series of cold and hot functional commissioning tests related to plant activity and safety were performed.
PAEC will now operate six nuclear power plants in the country with the start-up of K-2 NPP. Two of them, Karachi Nuclear Power Plant Unit-1 (K-1) and Unit-2 (K-2), are located in Karachi, while four are located in Chashma, District Mianwali, and are known as Chashma Nuclear Power Plant Unit 1-4.
Previously, all PAEC-operated NPPs had a combined generation power of about 1,400 Mega Watts. The start-up of K-2, with a capacity of 1100 MW, would nearly double these estimates, significantly increasing nuclear power’s overall share of the energy mix.
In the meantime, the Karachi Nuclear Power Plant Unit-3 (K-3) is undergoing commissioning and is scheduled to begin production in the first quarter of 2022.
It is worth noting that the addition of renewable, secure, and cost-effective nuclear power to the energy mix would have a significant positive impact on society and the country as a whole.