In case you didn’t notice (and many of us did not) Jordan has just signed a deal with Russia for the construction of a nuclear reactor.
Here are some interesting points about this deal:
- This is the first signed nuclear deal after the Fukushima nuclear leak in Japan in 2011.
- Jordan is a US ally. Yet it chose a Russian company over a Canadian and a Japanese company that were also shortlisted as final bidders. No raised voices from the US.
- The Jordanian chose a Russian company, despite Russia’s disastrous performance in Iran over the building of the Bushehr nuclear reactor which is 12 years late.
- What is even more interesting is that both the Bushehr reactor and the Jordanian one are of the same design (VVER-1000), with the Jordanian reactor being a more modern version.
- The VVER-1000 uses fuel rods which are produced from enriched uranium.
- According to Al Monitor “In March, Jordan refused to sign a US nuclear accord that would restrict it from enriching uranium. Enrichment is a sovereign right and potential source of Jordanian income, Toukan said. He envisions Jordan as a future “regional fuel bank,” mining, enriching and selling uranium around the Middle East. ( Toukan is the chairman of Jordan Atomic Energy Commission (JAEC)
- A regional fuel bank is a great idea. But in the Middle East? Seriously? We saw what happened to the Arab league.
- Jordanian people are actually getting the opportunity to have a say about whether they want nuclear power, or not. Unlike Iran.
- Nobody is losing sleep over this in Israel, yet. Think threat perception.