BUDAPEST, May 11. /TASS/. The 11th package of the European Union’s (EU) sanctions against Russia does not include any bans on cooperation with Russia in the nuclear field, Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade Peter Szijjarto told a press conference on Thursday following talks with Bulgarian Energy Minister Rossen Hristov in Budapest.
"The talks on the 11th package of sanctions started in Brussels on Wednesday. The European Commission’s proposal on the package does not include sanctions on nuclear industry. And as I said earlier, Hungary will in no case accept such proposals," he said when asked to comment on preparations of more restrictions against Russia by the EU. The press conference was broadcast on the Facebook (prohibited in Russia due to its ownership by Meta, which has been designated as extremist) page of the Hungarian minister.
"Hungary still does not support any sanctions on nuclear energy as the choice of ways of electricity production is a matter of national competence," Szijjarto noted. Hungary has been exploiting the nuclear power plant in Paks that was constructed with the participation of Soviet specialists and that uses Russian nuclear fuel, for more than 40 years already, he added. "Of course, we will not abandon plans to construct two more power units in Paks" as they are to ensure the country’s guaranteed energy provision in the long run, the minister stressed.
He also noted that Russia’s nuclear fuel that previously was delivered by rail through Ukraine, is currently supplied for the NPP in Paks first via the Black Sea to the Bulgarian port of Varna and later by rail through Bulgarian and Romanian territory to Hungary. "In this regard Bulgaria is also an important transit country," Szijjarto said meaning that a branch of the TurkStream pipeline supplying Russian gas to Hungary also crosses Bulgaria.