Argentina watch: Chihuido, nuclear, Edelap updates

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Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Argentine President Mauricio Macri and his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, will discuss the 637MW Chihuido multipurpose dam project at the G20 summit this week in Hangzhou, China.

That's according to Omar Gutiérrez, governor of Argentina's Neuquén province, where the dam is planned to be built.

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Gutiérrez told provincial state-owned media outlet Neuquén Informa that authorities are aiming for construction on the project to begin this year.

Russian development bank Vnesheconombank pledged to finance the project under Macri's predecessor, Cristina Fernández de Kirchner.

Macri's government sent a delegation to Moscow this year, reportedly with the intention of securing more attractive financing terms for the dam. Chihuido I, a consortium made up of Russian, Spanish and Argentine firms, is behind the project.

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Argentina's temporarily shuttered Arroyito industrial heavy water plant, or PIAP by its Spanish acronym, will resume operations.

Located in Neuquén province, the plant will supply heavy water to the existing Atucha I, Atucha II and Embalse nuclear reactors, Télam reported, as well as the planned Atucha III power station.

PIAP had been shut down for maintenance. Its operator, provincial engineering firm ENSI, was also awaiting a more clearly defined national nuclear policy before restarting the production of heavy water, Télam said.

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Argentine power distributor Edelap offered US$27mn to acquire a 12.5% stake in transmission firm Transener, state news service Télam reported.

Edelap supplies electricity to more than 1mn residents in the Buenos Aires province districts of La Plata, Berisso, Ensenada, Brandsen, Magdalena and Punta Indio.

Edelap and Transener are subsidiaries of Electroingeniería and Pampa Energía, respectively.