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Putin sees good prospects for nuclear energy cooperation with Bolivia

Construction of the Center of Nuclear Research and Technologies is close to completion by Rosatom

MOSCOW, July 11. /TASS/. Plans to build a research nuclear reactor in Bolivia are unique, Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday after talks with his Bolivian counterpart Evo Morales.

"We see good prospects for cooperation in the sphere of nuclear energy. Construction of the Center of Nuclear Research and Technologies is close to completion by Rosatom. This is a unique project: the nuclear reactor will be situated at height of about 4,000 meters above the sea level. There has been no such experience in the global practice before," the Russian President said. "The Center is intended to deal with scientific research in the peaceful nuclear energy sphere and its developments can become applicable in the most diverse sectors of industry, in geology, healthcare, and agriculture," Putin said.

The energy sector at large "is an important area of bilateral cooperation," the head of state said. The Russian gas holding Gazprom invested about $500 mln into the oil and gas sector of Bolivia and is developing fields in the territory of this country, Putin said. The Russian business shows interest in developing Bolivian deposits of lithium and other valuable resources with use of high-performance and ecofriendly technologies, he added.

"Our companies are ready to participate in infrastructural projects in the territory of Bolivia. This refers to expansion of the international airport in Santa Cruz with the prospect of making a large logistical center on its base and construction of the inter-oceanic railway corridor," the Russian President said.

"Russian automobiles enjoy demand on the Bolivian market. Russian companies will take part in implementation of the Bolivian program of freight and passenger transport fleet conversion to natural gas vehicle fuel," Putin added.

The Central inter-oceanic railway corridor is intended to connect Santos (Brazil) on the Atlantic Ocean wit Ilo (Peru) on the Pacific Ocean across territories of Bolivia. The railway is planned to be opened in 2023. The railway length will be 3,360 km.