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UAE's nuclear regulator close to issuing licence for Barakah plant

Christer Viktorsson, Director-General of the UAE's Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulation speaks during a news conference in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates March 27, 2019. REUTERS/Stanley Carvalho

ABU DHABI (Reuters) - The United Arab Emirates’ nuclear regulator is “in the final stage of issuing” a licence to the operator of the Gulf country’s Barakah nuclear power plant, a senior official said on Wednesday, without giving a timeline.

Christer Viktorsson, director-general of UAE’s Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulation (FANR) was speaking at a news conference in Abu Dhabi.

Barakah is being built by Korea Electric Power Corporation (KEPCO), but problems with training enough local staff have delayed the startup of its first reactor several times. Barakah, the world’s largest nuclear plant under construction, should start operations between end 2019 and early 2020.

Reporting by Stanley Carvalho, Writing by Nafisa Eltahir; Editing by Rania El Gamal and Louise Heavens