Updated 12:53 AM EDT, Tue, Oct 26, 2021

Argentina to Build Two Nuclear Plants with China's Help

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Argentina and China have signed a number of agreements to build the South American nation's fourth and fifth nuclear power plants for an investment worth $14 billion.

The Argentine President's Office said on its website that the pacts between the two governments were inked within the framework of the G20 summit to be held in the Turkish seaside resort of Antalya, Fox News Latino reported. The agreements were signed by the president of Nucleoelectrica Argentina, Jose Luis Antunez, and the head of China's CNNC nuclear firm, Quian Zhimin, with officials from both nations present.

According to the news outlet, the fourth nuclear facility to be built will have a heavy water reactor and will be situated in the city of Lima in the province of Buenos Aires, where the Atucha atomic complex is already running. The fifth nuclear center will operate at a yet-to-be determined location and will operate with enriched uranium and light water. 85 percent of the construction fees of both plants will be financed by China.

"These contracts . . . are going to ensure our energy supply in the future," said Argentine Economy Minister Axel Kicillof after the signing ceremony, as quoted by Fox News Latino from the website.

Argentina's federal planning minister, Julio de Vido, stressed out that the signing of the agreements is "a basic step in diversifying the energy matrix, increasing the participation of the nuclear sector," Fox News Latino added.

Argentina and China have signed plenty of energy infrastructure ventures under the presidency of Argentine Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, the news outlet noted. Both countries build nuclear centers, hydroelectric dams, and transportation infrastructure, such as the refurbishment of Belgrano Cargas, Argentina's major cargo railway.

Argentina Now Open for Business after Two Decades

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is reportedly taking business leaders to Argentina for the first time in two decades.

"There are many, many opportunities in that country," Francisco Garza Egloff, Chief Executive Officer of Arca Continental, said on a conference call with investors last month, as quoted by Bloomberg. "Well-located, well-positioned in terms of energy, commodity and so on, no debt. It's a tremendous opportunity to work with a well-educated and prepared population."

Conducting business in Argentina has been tedious in the past years, Bloomberg wrote. The country's 30 percent inflation caused currency controls to be pricey, economic growth is inferior, and government policies are erratic. The recent news is promising for foreign companies, which believes that Argentina's economy will eventually normalize through its educated workforce, as well as its possession of the world's second-largest shale gas reserves and the third-largest source of soybean exports.

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