ABN - The tender for an estimated US$72 billion expansion of South Africa’s only nuclear plant will begin in June this year.
State-owned utility company Eskom will request proposals from companies bidding for the project in June, before setting the deadline for bids in September, according to newspaper City Press.
The paper also reported that the winning bidder will be decided in March 2018, with the contract to be signed between December 2018 and March 2019.
Eskom spokesperson Khulu Phasiwe said: "Nothing at this stage has been decided on, those dates were suggestive dates.
"If everything goes well, we will issue a request for proposals around June."
South Africa, which owns the only nuclear power station in Africa, has long considered increasing the role of nuclear energy in the nation’s power supply, as it attempts to transition away from an aging fleet of coal-fired plants.
However, news of the tender process for the nuclear plant expansion will be met with environmental opposition, along with economic concerns relating to the cost of the development work.
South Africa’s international credit rank was downgraded to junk status last week by S&P Global ratings.